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One of Steve Frechette’s most memorable moments as an Associate Professor of Cybersecurity and Computer Information Systems was helping a student attain her goals.
“I met this bright young woman who emigrated from Pakistan who was trying to do everything to get ahead, but many obstacles were forces pushing against her,” recalls Steve. The Training Resources and Internship Network (TRAIN) grant program enabled her to enter Bristol’s Cybersecurity Certificate program for free while she was still attending high school. “She is talented and motivated and aspires to enter a 4-year college.”
Bristol received thousands of applications for its free cybersecurity certificate program. The program is highly competitive and has already demonstrated remarkable success.
“There is a focus on equity and students who are underrepresented,” says Steve. “After completion, students may be able to transition into a full-time job with just a certificate. Community colleges provide a great opportunity to be the person you want to become personally and professionally.”
Steve teaches the cybersecurity curriculum in the STEM division. His coursework includes networking technologies, cybersecurity principles, cyber defense and firewall security and the cybersecurity capstone.
Steve’s roots are planted firmly on the South Coast. He was born in Fall River and moved to Swansea when he was in fifth grade. Educated at UMASS Dartmouth, he earned both a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering and a Master of Business Administration (MBA). He is currently seeking his Doctor of Science in information technology at Middle Georgia State University.
Like many of the students he teaches, Steve found his career path at Bristol. He was working grueling hours in IT for a Boston-based tech company at the height of the dot-com bubble. “After the World Trade Center bombing, I lost my job with a tech start-up company in Providence,” he said.
For the next nine years, he worked as a carpenter. While volunteering at the Small Business Development Center during his MBA studies, he took an opportunity to teach a computer course at Bristol. He joined Bristol’s IT team to spearhead the college’s cybersecurity initiatives and in 2019 transitioned to become a full-time faculty member.
And that student that Steve helped? She has been accepted to Cornell University on a full scholarship. Steve calls this, “...the magic of Bristol.”