Kicking off National Cyber Security Awareness Month, the Department of Computer Science is excited to welcome a new faculty member with a specialization in cyber security, Dr. Xenia Mountrouidou. Dr. X, as she prefers, brings with her a wealth of knowledge and academic experience, along with a $300k NSF grant to integrate cyber security into undergraduate computer science curriculum. Her past experiences include working at IBM as a Software Engineer for IBM and completing a postdoctoral research fellowship at the College of William and Mary. We look forward to her expertise and the opportunity to bring additional awareness to cyber security.
Dr. X will be presenting, as part of our CS Research Speaker Series, about her new cyber security research lab on Monday, October 24th, 3:30PM at Harbor Walk West, Room 217. Mark your calendar and we’ll see you there!
How did you come to be interested in teaching computer science?
My father bought me my first computer when I was 12 and I watched the movie “The Hackers”. Because of this movie, I taught myself programming to become a hacker, not as a computer scientist. I soon learned that this was not a legal profession, so the next closest job was to become a computer scientist. I have been fascinated ever since I got my first computer, with technology, everything around it, and I could not have picked a better job.
The most rewarding part of your job is….
To watch students’ progress and how they evolve, especially when we work closely together in research and development. I am always fascinated how in the beginning students are usually guided by me and by the end of our collaboration, they are independent thinkers ready to contribute to a project. I also love research in cyber security. It never gets boring, there is always something new to learn, it is practical, and offers immediate gratification and results. For example, creating a tool or discovering a vulnerability, these are very tangible and rewarding results in my opinion.
What is something that you would like to contribute to the College?
I would like to help CofC become even better known for its dedication to cyber security teaching and research. I believe the liberal arts setting is perfect, since it creates well rounded citizens with multidisciplinary knowledge.
An interesting fact about you?
I am an avid technical scuba diver. I cave dive in water filled caves that look like mazes and include albino fauna and fossils.