Zigmund Bernard

Photo of Zigmund Bernard

IST is so unique in how integrated our majors are and how familiar we become with everyone in the college during our time at Penn State. When I meet other IST students ... it's a great feeling of community that you can only get in a small college.”

Fast Facts

  • Class Year: Class of 2023
  • Major: Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations
  • Minor: Planetary Sciences and Astronomy
  • Hometown: Washington, D.C.
  • Favorite thing about IST: The career networks available through the college.
  • What I do for fun: I love playing the piano and cooking for my roommates and friends.
  • Best Creamery flavor: Bittersweet Mint. It’s not up for discussion.

Meet Zigmund

What do you remember about your first visit to Penn State?

I was a click away from accepting an offer from another university. But immediately after I finished my Penn State tour, I begged my mother to let me accept Penn State’s offer!

Which instructor has made the biggest impact on you?

Henry Moeller, lecturer of IST. We both came to Penn State in the same year and he was teaching my first-year seminar when COVID hit. Flash forward to today and he’s the instructor for my cybersecurity analytics and operations capstone course. He’s always been incredibly friendly and supportive toward me through mental and physical health issues, and I am so grateful that I was able to take several classes with him. I’ll be a learning assistant for him during my final semester and I’m so excited for the opportunity!

Have you completed an internship?

Yes, this past summer I completed a cybersecurity consulting internship at EY. I recently accepted a full-time offer from the firm and am so excited for all the learning opportunities they’ll continue to provide me.

What are your career goals?

I want to become well versed in cloud computing and a go-to name for knowledge on the subject in my field. I hope to work for EY for many years and hone my skills so my career can expand and I can hopefully serve as a success story and role model to others who may have faced the same challenges that I did.

What is the best thing about IST?

Definitely the community. As a smaller STEM college at Penn State, IST is so unique in how integrated our majors are and how familiar we become with everyone in the college during our time at Penn State. Every cybersecurity analytics and operations student has taken courses in security and risk analysis and information sciences and technology in addition to those specific to our program. When we meet other IST students through clubs, general education classes, or just across campus, it’s a great feeling of community that you can only get in a small college — especially one that is as focused on group work as IST.

What motivates you in your academics?

My family. I derive so much drive and motivation from thinking about my future family, my brother and cousins, the wife and children I’ll have someday, and my parents who want so much for me. I don’t need my name to be known and I don’t much care about being remembered, but I want to ensure that my descendants have the best start possible.

What has been your most memorable IST moment?

Celebrating with Rita Griffith, assistant director of professional development in the IST careers office, after I got my internship offer.

What’s a fun fact about you?

When I was in 7th grade, I encountered representatives from the Penn State Eberly College of Science at a science convention in Washington, D.C. At their booth they were making candy by dropping some strange substance into some strange liquid, and it then turned into a solid. I decided in that moment that I wanted to go to Penn State when I grew up. Later that day, I told my grandma that story and she, being a New Zealand native who hadn’t heard of Penn State, assumed I was talking about the University of Pennsylvania and convinced me of that. I got confused and forgot Penn State existed until college applications rolled around a half decade later. Turned out alright, I’d say!

Last updated November 2022