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Ger Lee starts career in IT after recruiter said he "lacked experience"

Cybersecurity Program Graduate

Ger Lee ‘22 grew up two blocks away from Summit Academy’s Extension Campus, the North Star Innovation Center. Lee was always interested in technology and gadgets, as he would break toys to see how they worked. When it came time to continue his education, Lee enrolled at Summit Academy OIC to combine his interest in Information Technology (IT) with the convenience of a 20-week job training program.

“It’s a weird coincidence that I’m back [in the area] again. It brings back a lot of memories. I feel like I’ve gone full circle,” said Lee. After graduating from North Community High School, he aspired to attend post-secondary education. He explored computer science degrees at several colleges and researched online boot camp options.

“I do have the time [to attend a 4-year college], but I didn’t have the money to justify if that was worth my time,” said Lee. When Lee applied for an IT help desk position, the recruiter said he did not have enough experience to land the job. Thus, he decided it was time to double down on learning the fundamentals of the IT industry.

When Lee arrived at Summit, he quickly felt supported by his instructors and dove head-first into the Cybersecurity program. “I enjoyed the battle room [learning scenarios] called Project Ares. One scenario dealt with digital forensics, and the other dealt with system analysis,” said Lee. “Learning stuff like finding a deleted file or typing a code to ping a website is pretty awesome.” One of his biggest takeaways from the program was his hands-on internship with Hennepin County, where industry professionals taught him other aspects of cybersecurity beyond what he learned in class.

Armed with his hands-on cybersecurity training and certification, Summit’s career services team supported Lee on his journey toward starting a new position as a data technician with DataBank. “It’s not like you completely graduate and [Summit] leaves you on your own. Here they walk you through step by step,” said Lee. “I’ve been putting off my career choices for so long. I’m excited to start my IT career.”

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