From Basic Computer Skills To Junior Penetration Tester: Olufela’s Success Story
Olufela was first introduced to TryHackMe through a cyber training initiative. With over a year of consistent study, she specialised in offensive security and landed the role of Junior Penetration Tester. Here's her story!
“It’s okay to take things in small steps. There’s so much to cyber security as a whole, so taking this time to absorb things at your own pace is important. From developing my skills with TryHackMe, I have landed a job as a junior penetration tester! I’m excited to continue learning and building my knowledge.”
Cyber security learners adopt TryHackMe across 6 continents, and we love hearing success stories from people all over the world. Take Michael for example, who transitioned from a music teacher to a security engineer, or Brandon, who complemented university with TryHackMe to land his first role.
Today’s success story is Olufela’s, who lives in Lagos, Nigeria. Olufela was first introduced to TryHackMe through a cyber training initiative and has since specialised in offensive security, achieving the role of Junior Penetration Tester for a Nigerian company. We chatted with Olufela about her journey - the successes, challenges, and advice for fellow job seekers.
Why did you start learning cyber security?
In April 2021, I was honestly confused about my life - what I wanted to do and what I wanted to study. I didn’t get into the university I applied for and was in a rut. A close friend of mine sent me a link about a cyber initiative, CyberGirls, which teaches cyber security skills in my area. After looking at what the programme entailed, I was intrigued by cyber security; it was different, interesting, and had more promising prospects than I had previously seen. A few weeks after applying I was accepted into the fellowship, which partnered with TryHackMe to offer real-world training. This is where my journey began.
What was the most challenging part of learning cyber security, and how did you rise above those challenges?
I was not the kid that grew up with computers. I didn’t have exposure to one until I was a young adult, so it was a case of learning all the foreign terms and software I hadn’t previously encountered. I rose above these challenges by learning at my own pace and understanding it’s okay to take things in small steps. There’s so much to cyber security, so taking this time to absorb things at your own pace is really important.
How did TryHackMe help you learn?
TryHackMe has some amazing learning content. On top of that, the module arrangement and specified learning paths divided into small modules significantly helped my learning - especially when I wanted to take things slowly and thoroughly take in what I was learning. The streak feature has also helped me stay on track; even if it’s just a tiny portion of study a day, I love to make sure I’m keeping it up!
What have you accomplished with your new skills?
Learning with TryHackMe has helped me develop skills even without having a baseline understanding beforehand. I practice digital safety and understand the importance of cyber security and complex concepts - which is awesome.
I have landed a job as a junior penetration tester with these skills! Honestly, I felt a little unprepared and nervous to take this step, as the work environment is very different from the learning environment. However, the beauty of it all is that even as you start your career, you will be consistently learning, contributing to your growth and development and your role responsibilities. I’m excited to continue learning and building my knowledge.
What advice would you give someone just starting in cyber security?
Starting out can be overwhelming! There’s an incredibly vast amount of resources and information online, so I would stress the importance of researching the positions you’re interested in - if you’re learning for job prospects. This can be great to streamline your learning into that path. Even if you choose to adapt to different interests in the future, this is a great way to avoid being overwhelmed. I knew I wanted to learn the offensive side of security, so I enrolled in the Junior Penetration Tester path on TryHackMe and focused on offensive security rooms.
If you’re in a similar position, tell yourself you can do it! Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, and cultivate the habit of asking questions. Keep learning, keep growing, and go and get it!
Follow Olufela’s journey on LinkedIn