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Hockey mom finds new passion for cybersecurity

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Brooklyn Park, October 25, 2021 – When COVID resulted in Kara Hummel losing her job, she never imagined how it would allow her to find an exciting new career path.

Due to the pandemic, Kara entered a displaced worker program which covered the cost of job re-training. She enrolled at Hennepin Technical College (HTC) and pursued a one-year certificate in cybersecurity. Previously, she had been working as an administrative assistant and didn’t have a background in IT.

During COVID, the information technology and cybersecurity classes at HTC were entirely virtual. As the mother of two kids, Kara enjoyed the convenience. When her son played hockey, she brought her laptop to the arena and participated in Zoom classes at the same time. 

“I would listen during hockey games, but I would go back later and listen again with more focus too,” said Kara.

She described how her focus slipped-- just once. During one class, she became distracted by the hockey game and began cheering -- but she realized that she forgot to hit the mute button on Zoom.

Kara said encouragement from IT faculty was key to her academic growth. Faculty urged her to join a new HTC team which competed in a statewide cyber contest. Kara was team leader and was proud that the HTC team performed well in its first year competing against hundreds of students across Minnesota.

After completing the cybersecurity certificate, Kara plans to continue her education and is considering IT network administration as a career.

“HTC has opened doors for me so I can move forward. I’m meeting people and I’m growing my community of professionals. It’s such an honor to be here,” said Kara. “The faculty want to make sure your education will go the distance. The finish line is amazing. You work so hard and it makes it all worth it.”

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Last updated by mdibba : 2022-04-25 09:47:34