Cybersecurity standout leverages resources at STC
Student of the Week: Hunter Huddleston
October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, and South Texas College recognizes the accomplishments of Hunter Huddleston, who has been nominated by faculty as STC’s Student of the Week.
Hunter says he is now eyeing a career within law enforcement or the federal government as he pursues his degree as a Cybersecurity specialist.
Hunter graduated from Sharyland Pioneer High School. His mother was also a computer instructor, so Hunter said he began looking for a degree that could supplement his love for technology once he finished high school.
Hunter said he is now pursuing his Associate of Applied Science-Cybersecurity Specialist and plans to graduate by May 2020. After receiving his associate degree, Hunter says he will return to STC to complete his Bachelor of Applied Technology (BAT) degree in Computer and Information Technologies (CIT).
“STC was actually my first choice for college. A lot of people leave the Valley, but I wanted to stay and it was financially responsible for me to stay. I ended up getting a lot of scholarships that allowed me to pay for a lot of my school. That was really the deciding factor.”
“STC was actually my first choice for college,” Hunter said. “A lot of people leave the Valley but I wanted to stay and it was financially responsible for me to stay and I ended up getting a lot of scholarships that allowed me to pay for a lot of my school. That was really the deciding factor.”
The Cybersecurity Specialist Associate of Applied Science and Certificate degrees are designed for students interested in entering the field of cybersecurity technologies.
The degree prepares students to learn practices that are designed to protect networks, computers, programs and data from attack, damage, or unauthorized access. Cybersecurity Specialists at STC learn about computer security, installing security software, network monitoring for security breaches, and how to respond to cyber-attacks.
While at STC, he said he gained job experience through an internship with Plexus, a startup company based in McAllen dedicated to IT solutions and advising.
“I just really wanted to learn the inner workings of computers as well how to protect them in case of a cyber-attack,” Hunter said. “I became especially interested after STC faculty Francisco Salinas visited my high school and began talking about the cybersecurity program. I realized that the program here is nationally recognized, and I was very excited to begin learning under him.”
As a message to students, Hunter says that in order to be successful you need to first establish a solid foundation, which he found in Jesus Christ.
“My foundation is my relationship with Jesus,” Hunter said. “This is my core, and it’s who I am. I think because of that I strive to be the best that I can be along with my parents who are my biggest motivators.
“As a student, you just have to get out there,” he said. “You can do anything you set your mind to, and as easy as it is to quit when things get hard, the reward for not quitting is even greater.”