Spotlight on Graduates: Tom Seberger

Spotlight on CSE Alum Tom Seberger
Spotlight on CSE Alum Tom Seberger

In a Q&A session, Tom gave some very helpful pieces of advice and information for all CSE students.

What exactly do you do at your job?

T:[We] perform the following duties:

-Application code scanning-looking for vulnerabilities in the programming code
-Website scanning-looking for vulnerabilities in the website
-Perimeter and internal penetration testing of the network
-Scanning the network-looking at vulnerabilities, system configurations, and system configurations to the US Government Client Build per the National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance.
-Network mapping of the structure and of all assets on the network
-Assist in cyber security incident remediation
-Configuration, installation, and monitoring of defense in perimeter devices monitoring the network
-Malware signature development and deployment in conjunction with US Community Emergency Response Team and other US Government Agencies

How has your degree helped your current career?

T: My degree provided me with the knowledge regarding application/website coding, which when scanning is complete allows me to work with the software developers and their project managers to remediate the vulnerabilities found. It also has helped when it comes to writing scripts and code for the different devices we utilize for network monitoring.

Do you have any advice for students?

T: Yes, the degree you are working on now is just the beginning, the basics for what is out there in the information technology world. Once you are out in that first job, remember that there are many different avenues within information technology that you can take, database management, software (Application) development, security, systems analyst, network administration and many other areas.

Networking with other information technology professionals through those organizations members you will find mentors who will assist you and pass on a vast amount of knowledge that will supplement what you have gotten with your degree.

How did you get your job, and did you have any internships prior to graduation? If you had internships, what did you do?

T:While I was an undergraduate student at UNL, I had an internship that I got through the student career services with the US Department of Interior, Geological Survey, Water Resource District (WRD) as a system administrator in a mixed Unix/Windows environment. This turned into a student government employee position. In this position I did network administration during the Y2K, help desk, developed a website utilizing GIS Software and incorporated the WRD data and reports into the map developed. This was the project I had for my web development class.

I also was a student teaching assistant for FORTRAN for the non-CSE students and assisted the professor with class and ran the lab for the class. I then took classes in the cyber security arena and moved to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and eventually to the Federal Aviation Administration. The entire time taking on more challenging jobs and continuing the education opportunities in cyber security.

I am currently working on a degree with the National Defense University specializing in cyber security. In May 2014, I will graduate with a Masters in Public Administration degree from the University of Kansas.

When you graduated, was working for the FAA what you had in mind?

T:My job with the WRD was tied to being in undergraduate school. So when I graduated the internship ended. When I graduated in 2001, any job that was offered to you was great. This was the middle of the burst of the internet company bubble. So the job market was flooded with many IT folks out there with lots of experience and looking for jobs too. I did coding for a banking software service company and did tier III support for a wireless internet provider before I went back to the government job at National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and really started my career.

Any advice on the job hunt or interview process?

T:My first advice would be to look for an internship while you are in your undergraduate program. I went to several job fairs that came to campus and talked with the companies that were there and asked them questions about the company and what they were looking for in the IT field. I did many different interviews through the student career services when they had companies on campus. I interviewed with Microsoft and many other companies, which helped me later doing interviews and to understand what the companies out there were looking for. This led to two job offers upon graduation which I took the COBOL Programmer position for a banking service company and then later with the wireless internet company.

Are you looking for any interns, or have any job openings, and if so, who should interested students contact?

The government is always looking for interns. Government jobs can be found at I know you are thinking government jobs are not the best, but I will beg to differ with you, I have a very interesting career and work with some of the best people in the country to provide cyber security for our government.