Header image for Across the Sea: Meet iSchool alum Denny Windgassen

Across the Sea: Meet iSchool alum Denny Windgassen

IMG_0496The life change from high school to college can be overwhelming. But, what if you finished high school in Germany and then pursued college in the United States?

Denny Wingassen hopped the ocean with ease, moving from Germany to the United States. “My parents had won a green card/permanent resident card in the Green Card lottery,” he explained. Leaving behind his family for a life in America, Denny threw himself into studies at Broward College for a year before transferring to Florida State in January 2008. Initially, he majored in Information Technology and Meterorology, but decided to drop meterorology, sharing, “Meterology has some interesting career paths, but I was more keen on IT.”

Denny’s intuitions paid off. Pursuing Information Technology with tracks in Networks & Security and Health Informatics, Denny interned at Tallahassee Memorial Hospital to improve operating efficiency. As a student, he participated on the executive communications committee for AITP, the Association of Information Technology Professionals.  In 2009, Denny crossed the sea again, this time traveling to Hong Kong with Asia as the Global Future program for a month.

A year later, Denny was at a Florida State career fair when he first met Deloitte & Touche and was offered a job. Following graduation in May 2010, he started with Deloitte as an IT Auditor out of their Boca Raton office. For a year, Denny traveled across the country and through France, Germany and the Netherlands as an auditor. Not long after, he accepted a position with Citigroup as a Senior Ethical Hack Analyst. “Basically, we identify security weaknesses and vulnerabilities in web and mobile applications,” shared Denny. The various applications were for customer facing and internal Citi systems across the globe. Excelling quickly, Denny became an interim Project Manager and eventually an Ethical Hack Technical Team Lead, a position he serves in today.

It all started with a move that took Denny 5,000 miles and into a new life. He recently got married and became an American citizen, life successes that started with his education at Florida State University. “FSU allowed me to get the best out of me,” he said. “My time there opened my career opportunities and allowed me to make friends for life!”