In these crazy COVID times, businesses must adapt to the new world in order to survive. Core to Exceptional Software Strategies is our ability to innovate and overcome challenges to best serve our customers. So when ESS was presented with the challenge of safely running an internship program, we adapted and made the decision for the internship program be fully virtual. We are very excited for the program and look forward to the challenge of providing an engaging and interesting internship through remote work technologies. The next generation of talented ESSers who have accepted the opportunity to be part of our Virtual Internship Program are:


  • Jenna Buto is attending the University of Colorado, Boulder in Boulder, Colorado and is pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics with a Computational Track.
  • Alex Cohen is attending American University, School of Public Affairs, in Washington, DC, and is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Justice & Law (with a Concentration in Terrorism and Security Studies). She is also one of the two interns from our 2019 Internship Program and we are glad to have her back for another year.
  • Eric Stanford is attending the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) in Catonsville, MD, and is pursuing a double major Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science and Biology.
  • Shelby Waltman  is attending the University of Maryland (UMCP) in College Park, MD, and is pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Information Science.

JD Broussard will be managing the interns this summer and has come up with two projects that they will be working on in pairs.


Alex and Shelby will be working on the Cybersecurity path. This path will guide the interns as they learn and apply industry best practices in enterprise cybersecurity. With the assistance of ESS engineers, the interns will take a crash course in cybersecurity and apply that knowledge by performing penetration testing and other Red Team tactics. They will be responsible for a final Red Team report and presentation of findings of a live test on ESS networks. After assessing ESS networks for vulnerabilities, the interns will then play the role of a Blue Team Defender and work to close the gaps discovered as an attacker. Throughout the program they will be introduced to relevant government and industry standards that outline best cybersecurity practices.


Eric and Jenna will be working on the Blockchain Developer path. This path will provide software engineering experience and an introduction to bleeding edge technologies, including Blockchain and containerized cloud computing. With the assistance of ESS engineers, the interns will learn all about blockchain and an overview of the research ESS has completed in this area. They will then apply that foundational knowledge by developing prototype blockchain applications designed to help ESS evaluate blockchain use cases and specific blockchain platforms. These apps will be built for a Kubernetes-based cloud platform that will expose the interns to the latest and greatest cloud computing architectures. In addition to developing prototype applications, the interns will be responsible for helping build a training guide for future blockchain developers.


The 2020 Summer Internship Program begins on June 1 and will go through until August 7. Even though the program has to be virtual this year, we are excited to have these four as part of the ESS family for the next several months!