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Posted by Anonymous (not verified) on 27 Mar 2018

You’ve put in the work to become an astronautical engineer. You’ve learned the math, the physics, the orbital mechanics. You have the engineering skills! You’re a wizard with a soldering gun.

But do you have the soft skills aerospace companies in the industry are looking for?

Astronautical engineering studentCapitol strives to prepare our students with not just the academic knowledge they need, but also the interpersonal skills needed to succeed in the workplace. According to Sarah Alspaw, Director of Career Development and Student Success, “soft skills are something on which you cannot take a test. It all boils down to emotional intelligence.”

There are many different valuable soft skills to have, but here are some that the aerospace industry is definitely looking for:

Communication – NASA notes that “superior communication” is one of the skills that they are looking for in their people, and they are not alone. Your work may not require you to give daily speeches, but the ability to clearly communicate ideas and thoughts to your coworkers and customers is a critical skill that many companies desire in their employees. Communication is especially important in the aerospace industry, as employees often work in teams.

Collaboration – It’s unlikely that you will be building the space technology of tomorrow alone. Even in our astronautical engineering program at Capitol, students work together on major projects like the recent Cactus-1 CubeSat project, or Project Aether. Using your communications skills to not just talk to, but listen to your team mates is a critical skill to have on any aerospace project or, especially, mission.

Leadership – Being able to take the lead can sometimes be challenging, but when working on missions where failure could mean years of expensive and meticulous work down the drain, everybody has to be able to step up when called upon. Be confident in what you know, and be willing to step out of your comfort zone if it means the success of the team or mission.

Innovation and Creativity – You’re an engineer! You could’ve chosen an alternate scientific pursuit which would’ve required less flexibility and on-your-feet problem solving, but that’s not what you love. Don’t be afraid to voice your ideas. Everyone is different, and even the same type of engineering can be learned by different people in different ways. Don’t be afraid to contribute. Millennium Space Systems says that they are specifically seeking employees who “solve problems creatively.”

Open Mindedness – As Elon Musk once said, you should, “constantly think about how you could be doing things better, and keep questioning yourself.” If you aren’t pushing the boundaries of what has previously been thought of as possible, then you might not belong in the aerospace industry. Keep in mind that there’s a lot of team work and everyone is different. Being open to the ideas that others share is an important part of striving for innovation.

Self-Motivation/Management – Employers want someone who can both work well in a team as well as independently. Be responsible for your work, and take it one step further by suggesting ways you could contribute more. Did you notice while working on something that there was a way you could improve a process? Bring it up and offer to take it on yourself. Employers appreciate someone who is a self-starter.

For more help cultivating your soft skills, or for help with finding the right career path for you, make an appointment with Career Services at careers@captechu.edu.

Blog

Posted by raherschbach on 26 Mar 2018

By Jason M. Pittman, Sc. D.
March 26, 2018

In our last post, we discussed why the field of synthetic intelligence is essential to the future of our species. Before we move along too far, I think it is crucial to outline just what we mean by intelligence or being intelligent. In doing so, we can address fundamental questions such as what is intelligence, how do we measure intelligence, and also are we the only intelligent life.

Stock photo of an octopusIntelligence can be a controversial topic. Paradoxically, although we often talk openly about possessing intelligence, or about others possessing more or less intelligence than us, we are often hesitant to discuss ways of measuring intelligence.

In the present discussion, we are not concerned with how intelligent an organism is. Our concern is with a given organism's capacity for certain qualities, in relation to its environment. That’s a funny quality of intelligence; intelligence must be acted out in the situation for us to know that intelligence exists.

In keeping with my prior claims, I suggest that intelligence is not imitation. Further, intelligence is not the result of computation but can perform computation. Indeed, artificial intelligence agents fall short in this regard; such systems are imitative. For example, machine learning is a computational function -- beautiful and complex but not indicative of intelligence. No matter how real a video game agent may appear, the game agent’s behavior is merely a programmed simulation, a hoax.

The question remains, then: what is intelligence? As far as we can tell, intelligence is considered to be present when an organism can (a) learn; (b) reason about what is learned; and (c) enlist learning and reasoning as a means to solve problems.

How do we measure intelligence?

First, don't say an IQ test. Second, don't say an IQ test. Remember, we're concerned with determining the presence of intelligence. An IQ test quantifies the amount of intelligence present so to speak. We ought to be careful about putting the cart after the horse if we want to make progress.

Now, intelligence has another odd quality in that it is not directly observable. While many traits --  hair color, cellular activity, language, and so forth -- are directly observable by us in others, intelligence remains trapped exclusively within. However, we have become exceedingly proficient at measuring the expression of human intelligence in manners consistent with indirect observation. Think about how we observe distant celestial objects; not directly but through inference based on surrounding evidence. Still, our proficiency has limitations.

Foremost, the instrumentation we employ for humans does not generalize to non-humans. G factor, as a psychometric instrumentation, is an example. While g factor works for humans and some other mammals, there is no reliable, equivalent instrumentation outside of those mammalian models. Does that mean we are the only intelligent life?

Are we the only intelligent life?

The simple answer is, no. However, affirming a non-human intelligence is difficult in that there is an anthropocentric bias in play. Because we appear to be the only intelligent life form, we assume we are in fact the only intelligent life form. Such is far from the truth, however.

We, of course, know that some primates other than homo sapiens exhibit intelligence. As well, there are higher order mammals such as dolphins and whales that also appear to be intelligent. The recognition of intelligence in these organisms is straightforward because their intelligence mirrors ours. More troublesome is intelligence that differs drastically.

Plants are an example. Plants appear to be closer in intellect formation to swarm intelligence in some ways, to multicellular life in others. Further, plants exist on an entirely different time scale than humans. Colonizing organisms -- bees and ants are great examples -- display intelligence as a collective. Also, life, as we perceive such, is carbon-based. In contrast, we know that other elements such as siliconcan potentially form the necessary molecular basis for life.

Thus, building a synthetic intelligence is a tricky problem. Starting with higher order intelligence is misguided at best, perhaps impossible. In part, I suggest that is why artificial intelligence is not the path forward if we are sincerely interested in creating intelligence rather than imitating intelligence. Existing, alternative forms of intelligence, such as what we can indirectly observe in plant life, perhaps is a more tenable endeavor.

Yes, let’s start there. Along the way, we can explore by-product of intelligence that may be a new way to measure more complex forms of intelligence such as synthesized animal intelligence: agency. Tune in for the next post in two weeks to find out how I think agency is a novel measure!

Blog

Posted by raherschbach on 23 Mar 2018

If you're a college student or a graduating high school senior, you've had a significant amount of experience with writing papers and essays.

You've done it for classes. You may have written one for the SAT. Having come this far on your educational path, you're no stranger to expressing your ideas via the written word.

Now, put those pro essay-writing skills you've built over the years to use, and you could earn scholarships that help ease the burden of paying for college.

Stock photo of a graduating university studentDozens of scholarships are offered each year to graduating high school seniors as well as current undergraduates and graduates. Most require submission of a short (500 to 1,000-word) essay as part of the application process.

Below are some of the opportinities available in the coming months. Interested in applying? Contact the financial aid office at Capitol for suggestions and recommendations concerning the process. Some scholarships require certification by the school and/or recommendation letters.

Delaware-District of Colunbia-Maryland ASFAA, Inc. Scholarship -- opportunity expires soon!

To be eligible for this scholarship. you must be attending an eligible DE-DC-MD institution and demonstrate financial need as defined by the FAFSA and your institution. Minimum 2,5 GPA required. As part of the application process, candidates are asked to write a brief essay -- no more than one typed page in length -- explaining why you feel you would be a good candidate for the scholarship. You must also submit one letter of recommendation from an academic counselor or professor with your application. If interested in appying, contact the Financial Aid office -- each school is allowed to certify one eligible candidate. Applicaion deadline is April 5, 2018. For more details please visit: https://dedcmdasfaa.org/docs/forms/pdf/scholarshipapp.pdf

Building Cybersecurity Diversity (BCD) Scholarship -- opportunity expires soon!

Winners of the BCD scholarship, offered by the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center (FS-ISAC) receive $5,000 and an all-expense-paid trip to the FS-ISAC fall summit on November 11-14 in Chicago. This diversity-oriented scholarship is open to female applicants who will be at least 21 years old by November 11, 2018, and able to attend the summit. Applicatnts must be be pursuing a technology or security-related education, enrolled in college or other recognized program of study, and be authorized to work in the United States. An essay is not required for this scholarshop. Apply by April 15. 2018. For more information please visit:  https://fs22.formsite.com/FS-ISAC/form182/index.html

Fundbox Small Business Funding Scholarship

College and university students (including graduate students), as well as high school students who will attend college in 2018-19, are eligible for the newly-launched FundBox Future Small Business Owner Scholarship. First, second, and third-place scholarship awards will be offered ($2,000, $1,000, $500 respectively). To apply, write an essay of  1,000 words or less in which you describe how you'll use your knowledge and skill sets to create a small business (or big business) that would help impact society in a positive manner. Application deadline is May 31, 2018. For more details please visit:  https://fundbox.com/scholarship/

Go For the Gold Engineering Study Scholarship

Industrial Access, Inc. offers a $3,000 scholarship to one high school student that is or will be enrolled in an engineering school or field of study. You must have a 3.0 or higher GPA/QPA to apply, participate in volunteer work or community service, be in (or entering) your senior year of high school, and have been accepted at, or enrolled in, an accredited engineering school or program within the United States, including Capitol Technology University. Scholarship is available to US citizens and permanent residents only. Application deadline is April 30, 2018. For more details please visit:  http://www.industrialaccess.com/

Lawyers of Distinction Scholarship

College students who are not yet in their final year of studies, as well as high school seniors who have been accepted by a collge or university. are eligible for this $1000 scholarship. To apply, write a 500-word essay answering the question “What is one law that you think should be put in place that doesn’t currently exist?“. Make sure to tell us how it would benefit society. Application deadline is February 28, 2019. Winners will be notified in March 2019. For more details please visit:  http://www.lawyersofdistinctionscholarship.com/

The Fons Scholarship

Students enrolled in an accredited college or university in the United States are eligible to apply for the $1000 Fons Scholarship.  To apply, you'll need to write a 1000 word essay which answers the following questions:

  • Payment apps have risen in popularity in recent years, why do you think that is?
  • Can you identify why having a payments system which integrates scheduling helps a business/ professional as well as its customers/clients? How do you think payment apps will be used in the future?

Application deadline is August 1, 2018. For more details please visit: https://fons.com/scholarship

Students Affected by Cancer Scholarship

Ambient Edge, a top-rated air conditioning, heating & plumbing company serving Las Vegas and surrounding communities in Nevada and Arizona, offers a $1,000 scholarship for high-achieving students who have dealt with—or are still dealing with—cancer in any form. The scholarship will grant $1,000 to one talented, hard-working student to help them reach their dreams.To be eligible, you must be either a current or former cancer patient, or have stood by a loved one who was diagnosed with cancer. Scholarship is open to undergraduate and graduate students. as well as incoming first-year students; to be eligible, you must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher.ent/former cancer patient, or have stood by a loved one who was diagnosed with cancer.

As part of the application process, candidates are asked to write 500-1000 word essay on the following topic:

How did your experience with cancer change the way you look at your own life or the world around you? Did it affect your goals, or change the way you want to live your life? And how are you living up to that or pursuing those goals today? Tell us how your personal experience has shaped your broader approach to life, the people around you, and/or your career goals.

Submit a copy of your transcript, along with your application and essay (see below) by email at wecare@ambientedge.com. Deadline for Applications: December 31, 2018. For more details please visit:  https://www.ambientedge.com/2018-students-affected-by-cancer-scholarship/

Blake Rubin Scholarship

The Blake Rubin Scholarship is available to undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate students who are not in their final year of study, as well as to high school seniors who are going on to college. Amount is $1000. Write an essay answering the question, “Who is your role model in life and why?” in 500 words or less. Submision deadline is January 31, 2019. For more details please visit:  http://blakerubinscholarship.com/

Kalu Yala Scholarship

Write a 500-word essay on the topic "The Main Benefits of Studying Abroad," and you could be awarded the $1000 Kalu Yala scholarship, designed to help support future entrepreneurs and business people. Submission deadilne is December 31, 2018. The scholarship is not exclusive for Kalu Yala students or alumni -- students at other institutions can apply for this scholarship and use the funds at any college or university. Scholarship is open to undergraduate, graduate, or post-graduate students who are not in their final year of study, as well as to high school seniors who have been accepted into a college or university. For more details please visit:  http://kaluyalascholarship.com/

Blog

Posted by raherschbach on 22 Mar 2018

Capitol Technology University is entering an exciting new phase in its history.

Dr. Bradford L. Sims took the helm as the university’s eighth president earlier this school year, bringing an ambitious vision of new Capitol President Dr. Bradford Sims gives an addressprograms and institutional growth. On April 20th, the university will officially mark the launch of his presidency with an investiture ceremony on the Capitol campus.

On April 20th, 2018, Capitol Technology University will hold an investiture ceremony to officially inaugurate the Sims presidency. It will be a day of food, fun, and new beginnings as we look to the future of an institution founded in 1927.

Capitol’s history and traditions will be on display, as symbols of the institution are presented to the new president. Academic robes and regalia will highlight Capitol’s connection to a long, proud heritage of university education over the centuries.

During the ceremony, Dr. Sims will officially receive his ceremonial robes to be worn at graduation, including the presidential medallion.

Photo of an investiture ceremony at CapitolStudents, alumni, faculty, administration, trustees, benefactors, and partners all form part of that heritage. All have contributed their part to the Capitol story.

In celebrating new leadership, we will also be celebrating the Capitol community.

“An event like this is an opportunity for all of us to come together and reflect on the university’s mission, the critical role that higher education plays in transforming lives, and the ways in which societies benefit from technological innovation and scientific progress,” said Melinda Bunnell-Rhyne, vice-president of student engagement and university development.

“All of us at Capitol are excited about Dr. Sims’s leadership and the path forward which he is charting for the university,” Bunnell-Rhyne said. “The university is growing and evolving.”

The day’s events will, in addition to the investiture ceremony, include the official opening of the university’s new frisbee golf course. A luncheon will be held following the ceremony. During the afternoon, the Student Leadership Advisory Board (S-LAB) will host a celebratory event for students.

For more information on the Investiture and the day’s events, including an itinerary and more on Dr. Sims, please visit https://www.captechu.edu/investiture. Current students need not RSVP.

We hope you can join us on April 20th!

Blog

Posted by Anonymous (not verified) on 21 Mar 2018

Hector Santiago, Cybersecurity Program AlumniDr. Hector Santiago earned his doctorate in cybersecurity in 2014, with a dissertation that built on his telecommunications background and explored new approaches to analyzing cyber attacks. It was not his first time at Capitol; Dr. Santiago also holds a master’s degree from the university in telecommunications and information systems management. Among many other professional accomplishments, Dr. Santiago devised a non-forensic attribution methodology (NFAM) which is used by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to track down anonymous cyber adversaries. He also played a key role in building the database used by the DHS for identifying cyber threats to federal agencies.

In addition to his government service as part of the DHS, Dr Santiago is also a regular contributor to Homeland Security Today.

How did you first become involved in the cybersecurity field?

I was enlisted for nine years in the Army as a signals intelligence professional. As a result, I became very familiar with signals intelligence and telecommunications, and decided this was what I wanted to do after retiring from the military and transitioning to a civilian career. And it seemed to me that the smartest choice was for my career to take on more of a cybersecurity aspect.

Telecommunications is about how things are supposed to work – how devices are supposed to talk to each other, for instance. A telecommunications professional focuses on the expected outcomes. Cybersecurity is about how malicious actors can manipulate systems and devices to get an unintended outcome. These two areas – cybersecurity and telecommunications – are both continually evolving, but at different speeds. So, for instance, a rapid increase in processing speed, allowing a decrease in latency with regard to data transmission, might also constitute a variable which adversaries can use to their advantage.

In telecommunications, the guiding principle often amounts to “as long as everything works the way we expect it to work, things are fine.” The cybersecurity perspective is “no, at that same moment someone is doing something with your device that you did not intend and will harm you in ways you cannot possibly imagine.”

What do you find most interesting about the cybersecurity field?

Intelligence about cybersecurity supports a lot of policy making. Cyber is a hot button topic right  now, with policy being put forward at the highest levels based on the work done by analysts. I go to work every day with the knowledge that a project I’m involved with may well help shape national policy, and that’s exciting and rewarding.

What are some of the top-priority concerns with regard to cybersecurity?

One of the overarching concerns is the tradeoff between convenience and security. Everyone wants things to be as convenient as possible. We want to be able to access our information immediately. For example, a growing number of people like the idea of a cashless society, where you can just wave your phone – or maybe, someday, your hand – and be able to pay your restaurant bill or buy groceries. We see the benefits of having a chip in you that, for instance, will provide first responders with your HIPAA data if you suffer an accident or sudden medical condition. But we tend to forget about the security aspect.  It always seems to be an afterthought in the rush to get these exciting innovations out there. As a result, we are caught off guard by attacks which actually should not have been a surprise.

I mentioned the idea of a cashless society. This has implications that are far more radical than people often acknowledge. Wealth may no longer be attached to something tangible which we can retrieve if the grid goes down. Your wealth will be continually on the grid. If something happens to the grid, you won’t necessarily be able to reacquire it. In a cashless society, wealth consists of servers telling other servers what you are worth. Once we consider these implications, we may be inclined to rethink the priority we place on convenience.

What were your reasons for wanting to undertake a doctoral degree in cybersecurity?

I had a yearning to teach and to mentor others. A doctoral degree opens up the opportunity to teach classes and even become a faculty member at a college.  It also gave me the opportunity to refine my skill set in my chosen field. My research focused on telecommunications infrastructure as a precursor to malicious attacks. Typically, when people examine how malicious attacks come about, they look at behavior. I looked at infrastructure; I was able to identify certain types of infrastructure that are preferred by malicious actors.

Why did you choose Capitol for your doctoral degree?

I was familiar with the school, having already completed a master’s degree at Capitol, and I also knew that the cybersecurity program is highly regarded. It is a DHS and NSA-designated Center for Academic Excellence. Also, the program is online, offering me the flexibility that I needed at the time. Dr. Helen Barker was also a critical influencer in my decision to take on my doctoral level challenge.

What did you find most rewarding about the doctoral experience at Capitol?

The critical thinking and exposure to the scientific method involved in earning the Doctorate of Science degree – it’s like nothing else I’d experienced. Doctoral work was the first time I had to do a deeper dive into certain things to make sure that the work could withstand the utmost scrutiny. At the baccalaureate level, you may be basically writing book reports. At the master’s level, you’re hopefully undertaking something more rigorous. But at the doctoral level – and particularly in the doctoral programs at Capitol – students are challenged to go way beyond that and make serious contributions to their fields of study. It’s not an easy undertaking, but it’s well worth it; I’m incredibly proud of the caliber of the work I did as a student in the doctoral program. I take that professional ethic I refined at Capitol with me into work every day.


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