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“If we can we should” NC

 

Grace in Action believes in building long term relationships as our main strategy of support. For us, supporting an individual or a family means much more than helping them achieve a goal.  It means joining them in their journey to a more stable and successful life.

Who am I?

My name is Nathali Cano, mother of one and founder of Grace in Action.  Prior to breaking into the tech industry I worked for over 10 years in the social work field in various capacities from holistic therapist at a needle exchange program in NY to a licensed Family Support Worker.

 

Three Industries, One journey

 

From Social Work to Recruiting 

I grew up in one of the most dangerous countries (at the time it was consider so) in the world. I spent my teenage years and most of my  20s living in a low income area in NJ. I had a really hard time making ends meet. Without the support of a family, raising a little girl while at the same time trying to finish school was a daunting task to say the least. When I began working as a Family Support Worker for Healthy Families America, It came easy to me (not surprisingly)  to be able to relate to some of the  struggles from these families. I loved my job as a FSW, but I still was barely making my rent payments at the end of the month.

Thanks to an old friend who convinced me to learn more about recruiting, I dedicated an entire summer to read everything that came my way about the subject. I paid an online training and even hired someone to teach me sourcing strategies. A few months later, I landed my first recruiting job at a small staffing agency which ultimately led me to clear over 4 interviews at the largest online retail company in the world, Amazon.

I knew I always wanted to do something in tech, but due to the various circumstances in my life, no matter how much I wanted, I was simply not in the position to go back to college and begin from scratch. When the pandemic hit, I got laid off from Amazon. I knew then that if I wanted to transition to tech, this was the time to do so. For a few years I was already looking into various schools and even considered a few bootcamps. So instead of looking for another job, or letting my anxiety consume me, I signed up for a VERY intensive cybersecurity bootcamp in NYC. I was not quite sure what I was signing up for, but I knew I was going to finish it. I spent many months submerged in this new field. It was both one of the most rewarding journeys of my life but also, without a doubt, one of the most challenging ones. Tech proved to be harder than I thought, but I was committed.

I currently work as a Security Engineer  for the largest privately owned solar energy company in the nation. (Talk about hard work paying off, huh!!)

Apart from Cybersecurity, I also mentor and help individuals who are looking to break into the tech industry, especially those people who come from low income areas.

 

“Reverse Engineering The Recruiting Process: Attracting recruiters to land that job”

Technical guidance on:

  • Effective job searching strategies: Thinking like a recruiting, attracting them like a pro!
  • Resume building
  • Technical Projects Advice and guidance
  • LinkedIn optimization
  • Interview Taking Skills
  • Effective Networking and more
From Recruiting to Cybersecurity 

When I transitioned into recruiting from social work, I was fortunate that many of the families I used to work with, when their kids no longer qualified to be under the HFA program, they contacted me for support. I genuinely was not sure how I was going to be able to support them since I no longer had the benefits of the county’s social services network, so I did the most logical thing. I looked for food in my own fridge, clothes in my closet and each month would go and buy a few boxes of diapers for the families with the most need. Little by little I began asking friends and colleagues. I was lucky that my former Amazon manager liked Grace in Action’s initiative and began supporting me. Two years later, what began as a simple initiative to try to help a few families turned into a non-profit organization with over 30 individuals, volunteers and a growing network of  partner organizations.

Mindfulness as a tool

For over ten years I have incorporated various holistic practices in my life which have proved to be of great value when it comes to achieving my goals and an overall positive attitude (and a healthier state of being). I was not always into mindfulness, but I like things of value, things that actually work. Mindfulness proved me that is indeed a valuable tool in life. A balanced mind is imperative in order to succeed at anything we embark on because the road to success is often filled with set-backs. Adopting tools like perspective, gratitude, kindness,  meditation (active and passive), healthy cooking and eating etc. is a great way to maintain the balance needed to move forward.

I am certified in Ayurvedic Health Counseling, Ayurveda Inflammatory Pain Management, Shirodarah Massage and Reiki.

(Ayurveda is a complete medical system that encompasses all branches of regular medicine but with the difference that it takes all the

One of the meanings of Grace is Honor

My experience across these three domains have gifted me with a living and breathing framework that evolved  from the strategies, the methodologies, the set-backs and the wins throughout my journey across these three domain, social work and mindfulness, recruiting and cybersecurity. I am in currently in the third chapter of this book and I can not wait to share the pearl of wisdoms from this industry.

Cybersecurity has a soul, and it has honor. There is great need for dedicated and responsible talent in this field. My wish is to attract more minorities into this field as a way to better their lives with a rewarding career in Cyber but also for them to help us fight the good fight. We need help in this industry, and many people from low income areas need help to get out of very difficult circumstances.  My vision and mission is for Grace in Actions to serve as bridge between these two great needs by emphasizing social responsibility on both sides of the fence.

Public Speaking

I am a professional public speaker. I have had the honor to be invited to share this “job hunting” knowledge with students and professionals alike at various prestigious academic institutions around the USA including the official New York City Cybersecurity Academy and various other Universities including The Union County College of NJ and the University of Boston.

Back in March, 2022 I had the pleasure to support with career advice and resume reviews at the prestigious  Women In Cybersecurity Career Village at the WICYS conference in Cleveland, Ohio.

I was also selected to support the prestigious global SANS Open Source Intelligence  Summit  2022 as an Advisory Board Member and mentor.

Cybersecurity Speaking Engagements

I have spoken at the global SANS Cyber Threat Intelligence Summit  along with Jorge Orchilles.

I have given workshops at various Cybersecurity conferences including Cyberjutsu and Women in Cybersecurity (WICYS)

 

Public Speaking Mentoring Services

We offer mentoring on:

  • Building self-esteem by defeating impostor syndrome
  • Don’t just act confident, BE confident-  Mindful tools and techniques
  • How to prepare your talk
  • How to keep the message clear and the audience in mind
  • Don’t aim to impress, aim to inspire: Tips and perspective
Public Speaking and workshops on Ayurveda Medicine and Reiki:

I have given talks and workshops at various wellness centers around NY and NJ including the NY Harm Reduction Educators of East Harlem, Josephne’s in NJ and Reiki Wellness Center. I also hold online workshops.