Finding Work I Love

- Matt, 2017 IGNITE Intelligence Engineering Intern

How did you hear about FireEye? Why did you choose FireEye?

I took the class Malware Analysis / Reverse Engineering of Malware with Michael Sikorski in Fall 2016 during my first semester as a graduate student. Professor Sikorski told us about FireEye and Flare, the reverse engineering team at FireEye. The class was difficult, but it was more fun than any class I had taken previously. The assignments were designed well - we were taught the proper tools each week to handle the next problem. I was always excited to tackle the next challenge. I was going to finish my degree this summer, but when I heard of the opportunity at FireEye from Professor Sikorski, I decided to delay graduation for one more semester and apply for an internship.

What is the most interesting thing you have learned?
I have learned a lot of Python this summer while developing some modules for extracting malware configuration data, which is great, but reverse engineering and learning how to better use reversing tools such as IDA Pro and OllyDBG have been the most interesting.

What has been your favorite part of your internship so far?
My favorite part is the people I have been able to work with. Everyone has been helpful, kind, and available to answer questions. FireEye has far surpassed my previous experience in this regard.

What would our advice be to a student pursuing an internship at FireEye?
If you are interested in reverse engineering, try the FlareOn challenge on September 1st. If possible, take Michael Sikorski’s class at Columbia. Otherwise, work hard in school to get good grades and experience. You never know what may peak your interest or who may help you find the next opportunity. This is my third internship and each has been the product of a connection I made at school. Professors and students alike know I work hard because they have seen me in school and that translates to a smoother application process.

Is there anything else you would like to say?
It is never too late to pursue your dreams. I went back to school at 30 after some hard times and finally found a career I love. I never would have imagined getting paid to do work I love.

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