Abdul Basit Tusher
Abdul Basit Tusher

Abdul Basit Tusher is a transfer student from the Northern Virginia Community College who is scheduled to graduate in the spring of 2022.

Tusher studied part-time at Northern Virginia Community College for three years while working a full-time job. Already pushing past his 2-year plan with no college transfers on the table, Tusher was beginning to lose interest in his classes. That’s when he received an email from Virginia Tech promoting a seminar for the Northern Virginia BIT-Cyber program.

Tusher immediately began his research, answering the question, “What does the cybersecurity field look like in the upcoming decade?” He was pleasantly surprised to discover that cybersecurity will be a dominant and lucrative field for years to come.

“I wasn't able to go to Blacksburg in-person since I have to take care of my family,” Tusher said. “So, being able to study and earn a bachelor’s degree from Virginia Tech from my home would be one of the best benefits I can find.”

Tusher knew this was an incredible opportunity, but he also understood that the caliber of the classes would be like nothing he had experienced before.

“I was scared at the beginning because I knew that Virginia Tech was going to be a challenge for me. Especially the first semester,” he said. “Once I enrolled for the class, I reached out to my professors, introduced myself, and asked for help throughout the process. I found out that the professors are very helpful. Every time I sent them an email, they would be responsive right away.” 

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In his studies, Tusher keeps himself involved and diligent as a remote student. Attending his professors’ office hours regularly is something he finds very helpful and productive. When he attends, his professors answer his questions individually and go over concepts that he did not understand in class.

The online lecture recordings are also a benefit that Tusher appreciates, as they give him the ability to go back, review, and replay anything that was missed in class.

“It’s really important as a hardworking student to keep reviewing the content that is being taught in class and also following the notes to try and apply those concepts in the real field,” he added.

With only two semesters left before graduation, Tusher has started to plan his future.

“Five years from now, I see myself as a successful cybersecurity management major and I hope to be working with one of the best companies in the area, like Raytheon, Leidos, Amazon, or any of the government contractors,” he stated.

In addition to completing his degree, he actively seeks other ways to boost his skillsets. This includes completing LinkedIn Learning courses for Information Technology and taking Security+ courses on the side so that he has valuable certifications to support his degree.

“The future is technology,” Tusher commented. “And since I like technology and I was trying to find myself in a suitable position 10 years from now, I went with cybersecurity. I would say the program for BIT cybersecurity in Northern Virginia is a great opportunity for anyone in this area who wants to get a degree from Virginia Tech in cybersecurity.”

He continued, “In the beginning, I was questioning how they were going to make classes available for a few of us in this area when the majority of people are in Blacksburg. But I see that they care for us, and they make sure that when we are enrolled, we’re being taken care of.”

With the opportunities provided by the BIT-Cyber program, Tusher was able to find a field that he was passionate about and will continue his journey to success. 

-         Written by Virginia Nguyen