keeping current in the field

Division chiefs, program managers, and other senior staff members working in CISO organizations frequently find themselves needing to stay current on technologies while, at the same time, leading and managing segments of the IT security program and assigned staff. Attending conferences is one way that these senior level personnel can learn about new technologies, tactics, techniques, and practices which can be adopted by an enterprise. Over the course of two or three days, a busy manager or executive can attend a large number of briefings while also developing business relationships by networking with others in the field.

Find an IT Security or Cybersecurity conference that will be offered in the next six months and research the types of presentations and workshops which will be offered. Research the costs associated with attendance (conference fees, meals, lodging, travel). The conference venue must be within the continental United States. The conference itself should be one that you are interested in and would attend if the funding were made available.

Write up a travel request which includes a summary of the conference, a justification which explains the benefits of attendance (many conferences will provide a template), and an estimate for the costs that includes the following categories: conference or workshop fees, meals, lodging, travel. Format your travel request as a 1 – 1/2 page business memorandum (no more than 7 paragraphs) addressed to the Padgett-Beale CISO.

Your travel request should include links (URLs) for the conference and venue (including the hotel where you would stay). If meals are included in the conference fee then you should state that and not include those meals in your estimate. Use this GSA website to obtain estimates for meals that are not included in the conference fees:

Post your memorandum in the body of a message in this topic. After you have done so, read and critique the travel requests for two of your peers. Your goal for these critiques should be to help your peers improve their justifications so that the travel requests will be approved. Post at least two additional follow-up messages or responses (in any thread under this topic).

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