Bard College at Simon's Rock: the Early College
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5 Questions with Erik Elbieh '10


Erik Elbieh '10Erik is a cybersecurity researcher and consultant with Palindrome Technologies, a small New York City-area company. He previously worked at General Motors in Michigan leveraging his mechanical engineering background from the Simon’s-Rock-Columbia University 3/2 program.

Summarize your Simons Rock experience in 12 words or less.

An opportunity to pursue my excessive curiosity to the fullest.

What made you decide to pursue an early college education?

My family was living abroad and in the process of moving back to the U.S.A. after being away from the American education system for a number of years. The prospect of experiencing the transition in the middle of high school did not seem particularly appealing to me from the mental or social level. As someone who has always coasted through classes in school, I wanted a bit more of a rigorous mental challenge. Fortunately Simon’s Rock delivered.

Where would you like to travel to next and why?

If I was traveling for art, culture and food, I would pick the country of Georgia. If I was traveling more for personal interests and career, Estonia or South Korea because they’re consistently highly ranked for technological innovation.

What is one way we can all stay secure online?

There’s no simple answer but the number one way that should be on everyone’s list is using good password hygiene! 1) Don’t reuse passwords; 2) Add multi-factor authentication; and 3) Create secure passwords by making them strong.

Why do you give to Simon's Rock?

I think of Simon’s Rock as an opportunity for those who feel the standard pace is not for them and would otherwise be bored or cognitively deteriorate in the standard options. It’s a unique place too, where even though everyone is there for their own set of reasons, there is a lot of common ground.