Charles “Chuck” Baines, a DMV native, has a long history with Howard Community College (HCC), which began when he enrolled as a part-time student right after high school in 1999. He did not immediately have a well-defined career path, so he took time off from classes to pursue several job opportunities in hospitality, real estate, and the Air Force.
In 2008, Chuck joined HCC as a member of the print shop staff. He also returned as a part-time student and graduated with an AA in General Studies. He then attended the University of Baltimore where he studied corporate communications for the digital age and obtained a Bachelor of Arts in 2016 at the age of 36.
Although Chuck has always been interested in technology, cybersecurity was never a consideration until the COVID 19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns. The college’s Cybersecurity department, gave him the chance to serve in a supporting role. While Chuck researched policies and performed administrative tasks, his interest in cybersecurity was piqued. He began taking CompTIA certification prep classes through the Division of Continuing Education & Workforce Development at HCC, and after some long months of studying, was able to pass the Security+ exam. Chuck immersed himself in the field by joining study groups and participating in live exercises with the Baltimore Cyber Range.
Recently, Chuck joined HCC’s new Information Security department as the school’s first cybersecurity technician. He is currently re-enrolled at HCC as a student in the cybersecurity program, pursuing another AA while simultaneously studying to obtain more professional certifications. Chuck is proud of his accomplishments but also realizes that a career in cybersecurity is a commitment to lifelong learning.