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Cybersecurity Lab & Team

PBSC’s Cybersecurity Lab allows students to engage in real-world simulations to strengthen their cyber defense skills. The lab’s cornerstone device is the Ixia BreakingPoint Storm™, a state-of-the-art stress tester used to detect vulnerabilities in networks and data centers. Palm Beach State is one of only two higher education institutions in Florida to have the Ixia product, which is used by major corporations and government agencies to improve system security and train staff.

The lab also has network servers running various operating systems, virtual machine capability, switches, routers and a soon-to-be-installed video wall that will enable real-time threat visualization on multiple screens. Every session is recorded, so students are able to do analysis as well.

With access to such equipment, students gain a unique edge in this fast-growing field. According to Burning Glass Technologies, cybersecurity job postings grew 91 percent from 2010-2014, a rate three times faster than IT job postings overall.



  • Cybersecurity Lab at Palm Beach State College

    Cybersecurity Lab at Palm Beach State College

Grand Opening

If you couldn’t join us for the Cybersecurity Lab’s grand opening in September 2015, take a look at the photos. More than 150 business partners, students, faculty and community members joined us for the ribbon-cutting ceremony, an excellent panel discussion and tours of the new lab. See photos.

Lab opening panelists
Guest panelists at PBSC’s Cybersecurity Lab Grand Opening included (from left): Martin Kelln, senior vice president of ISSGlobal, an IT security solutions provider based in Boca Raton; Lynne Clark, chief of the National Security Agency’s National Information Assurance Education and Training Program; Daniel Stein, program director for the National Cybersecurity Education and Training Program within the Department of Homeland Security; and Elvis Moreland, chief information security officer at Palm Beach State College.


Meet our Team

John Sewell, Cybersecurity Range Specialist

John Sewell

John Sewell earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from the University of Nebraska and a Master of Science in Information Systems Cybersecurity from Florida Institute of Technology. He also holds teaching certificates and is a skilled electrician.  His special area of interest is as expected, cybersecurity. John started his IT career as a programmer/analyst and then merged into the profession of cybersecurity. He has worked as an educator and in information technology and as a business consultant prior to joining Palm Beach State College.

As the cybersecurity lab manager he is responsible for the day-to-day running and maintenance of the lab in addition to assisting with special projects for the department and for students. He is the liaison between the instructors and the administration regarding cybersecurity education.

John's office and lab hours are from 8am – 5pm.  His office is located in CBP104 and the lab is in CBP102.

Jose Ortiz, Program Grant Director, XCEL-IT

Jose OrtizJose Ortiz is currently the XCEL-IT Grant Director at Palm Beach State College. Before joining the XCEL-IT team, Mr. Ortiz worked in the private sector in various capacities.  He worked at Paradysz as a Direct Marketing Manager for St Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital direct mail campaigns.  While there, he was able to continue the efforts to raise funds, not only for St. Jude but for other non-profit organizations as well.   Mr. Ortiz also worked at Microsoft Licensing as an Operations Account Manager which fueled his decision to become part of the XCEL-IT team and his interest in the cybersecurity programs.  While at Microsoft, he worked closely with customer service groups and implemented changes into Microsoft’s CRM program for Latin America.  Before Mr. Ortiz began his journey in the private sector, he proudly served for the United States Navy as an Aircrew Survival Equipment Petty Officer 3rd Class.

Mr. Ortiz earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Puerto Rico and later earned his Master of International Business at Florida International University.

Wendy Gueldner, Student Development Advisor II, XCEL-IT

Wendy Gueldner

Wendy is the academic advisor for participants in the XCEL-IT programs.  She has spent her career working in higher education and non-profit settings in the areas of admissions, fundraising, communications and predominantly in academic advising.  She has created policies and training manuals for colleagues and mentoring programs for students; she has developed websites for fundraising purposes and implemented phone-a-thons and campus programs to get students, faculty, staff, alumni and parents involved in recruiting students or giving back to their alma mater.

If you have any questions about the cybersecurity programs, Wendy is the person to see as she works closely with our team to ensure that our participants stay informed about topics ranging from scholarships and certifications to internships and job opportunities.

Wendy has a Bachelors of Science degree in Business Management from Cedar Crest College.

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