Cimone Wright-Hamor is a cyber security engineer who earned all her degrees from Iowa State, receiving her Ph.D. in 2022. She will be the first to tell you that going to college is not all about degrees.
Wright-Hamor is employed at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Washington state as a cyber security researcher, where she works to secure the nation’s critical infrastructure. Right now, she is focused on securing electric vehicle charging stations.
“The Electric Vehicle Charging Stations (EVCS) are connected to the internet and the electric grid,” Wright-Hamor said. “This could be very dangerous if someone could control EVCS remotely; they could bring down charging stations and jeopardize grid stability.”
When she is not working to keep the grid safe, she is working to ensure college students get the most out of their experience on campus.
“I was motivated by students that were stumbling through their college degrees. There is more to college than the degree,” Wright-Hamor said. “The real benefits of college are access to the alumni network, the free or reduced-priced resources that help build your skills, and the amount of generalized knowledge in one location.”
The resources a university like Iowa State affords a student are invaluable, Wright-Hamor said. Access to state-of-the-art equipment and opportunities to work on cutting-edge research is only offered to some and should be leveraged by every student. The same principles apply to the alumni network, which can help you get hired or new clients. The access to knowledge that faculty, staff, and fellow students span across multiple disciplines, and these individuals can mentor students beyond the classroom.
Wright-Hamor utilized these resources herself at Iowa State, starting her own business with the help of the Pappajohn Center for Entrepreneurship. Her business is called Hey Cimone and is geared toward ensuring students get the most out of their college experience through e-coaching, mentorship, public speaking and making students aware of the resources their colleges afford them.
She travels the country speaking at different universities and high schools and just wrapped up a talk at Iowa State in February. It is all about marketing yourself, she said.
“I think everyone should take a marketing and sales course; you will spend the rest of your life having to market yourself to employers, friends, colleagues, potential partners, etc.,” she said. “I am ultimately giving people a blueprint for using these universities to accelerate their career.”
Her first book drops in late summer of 2023, “Manufactured Education: Leveraging college to accelerate your career without selling your soul.”
The book came about because she knew she could not speak everywhere, but she also knew some out there needed this information to reach their full potential.
If anyone would like to contact her about her services, email firstname.lastname@example.org to reach her.