My name is George Williamson, and I am living proof that it is never too late to go after what you want. You are never too old to make significant changes in your life if you are willing to do what it takes. All it requires is hard work, and discipline. I spent the first 20 years of my life building custom homes. When the economy crashed in the 90’s, it took my big plans with it.
As a high school dropout; building homes was all that I knew how to do besides shooting guns! I spent several years training with the NRA, and law enforcement to become a Concealed Carry firearms instructor for NC. I then went on to become one of 3 Force on Force instructors in the state of North Carolina. I love teaching, but it is not steady enough to provide for a family.
Now at 40 years old, I was facing another scary decision, but I knew what I had to do. I had to go back to school to get a degree. I got my GED and enrolled at ECPI for Cyber Security. The ISSA was one of the many extracurricular groups I joined, and one of the best choices that I made. I have met so many highly intelligent men and women who are eager to divulge their experience with me at the ISSA. I attend all the luncheons, events and the monthly meetings I can. The educational and networking events exposed me to the plethora of opportunities the Raleigh ISSA has to offer. From InfoSecon to the book swap; there are endless chances to learn if you take the initiative to get involved.
I am now months away from graduating with my degree in Cyber and Network Security and have started my career at one of the world’s largest cyber and network security companies; Northrup Grumman. It was not easy, and it is not over yet, but it was well worth the sacrifice to get to where I am today. My membership in the ISSA helped me to achieve my goals, and members helped me to find out about the job opening at NG. I plan to continue my membership in the ISSA and hope to one day contribute back as a volunteer or board member. The world is what you make of it, and so is the membership of this great organization.