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Shortage of Cybersecurity Professionals means Graduates with the Right Skills are in High Demand

Career opportunities for cyber security professionals have shifted in favor of job seekers rather than employers. Many companies are vying for individuals who posses an advanced knowledge of cyber security, which means career opportunities for those with a heightened digital acumen are bountiful, as Digital Forensic Investigator (DFI) notes in a recent article. DFI also points out that the shortage of individuals working in cyber security creates a risk for both national and homeland security. The fact that businesses continue to store increasing amounts of sensitive information digitally also heightens the risk for security breaches. The U.S. also has one of the most connected societies in the world and there are many vulnerabilities within the systems used. Joseph Giordano, Program Director for Utica College's online B.S. and M.S. in Cybersecurity degree programs, understands this need and is guiding the next wave of digital defenders.

"Because of how information intensive the U.S. is, everything that we're doing here is stored in some computing system, in some database system, in some cloud, public or private. The U.S government alone runs massive information systems. Our nation depends upon numerous national critical infrastructures like power grids, air traffic control systems, water systems, and nuclear systems. Then you have military systems with mission planning, command and control, communications, intelligence, surveillance, logistics and basic functions like payroll. So, government and industry really have a lot of similar security requirements," notes Giordano. "Utica graduates come out of the program with a skillset that is very transferable. They have had a lot of success finding work in the field."

Prestigious designations earned by Cybersecurity curricula, faculty and
facilities that exceed very stringent national criteria

Utica's online cybersecurity degree programs have earned NSA and DHS designation as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance/Cyber Defense Education (CAE IA/CD). The college also became the seventh school designated as a National Center of Digital Forensics Academic Excellence (CDFAE) by the Defense Cyber Crime Center (DC3), and is the first school in the nation to hold both of these designations. Students receive a top-tier education from faculty who are industry experts and follow a curriculum that focuses on subjects that are pertinent to career success. As DFI also notes, roles in the government are increasingly demanding highly skilled candidates with niche subject knowledge, which is why Utica offers specializations in computer forensics, cyber operations and cyber intelligence. Graduates leave with the theoretical knowledge and advanced skills to prevent tomorrow's digital threats.

Courses developed specifically for the needs within Cybersecurity

According to Utica College Cybersecurity professor Dr. Leonard Popyack, "The problem of safeguarding information is not going away and the burden falls upon the human in the loop being able to identify when software and hardware are not behaving correctly through the malicious acts of others, and this takes a very specialized skill. How do you know that your computer is under attack or has been compromised? There is no little red light that tells you that the engine has failed. In many cases, there's a very specialized analysis that has to be done when there is the hint of suspicion that either a person or an organization has been targeted for attack. We teach those very specialized skills at Utica".

In conjunction with this Giordano added, "Utica's online cybersecurity programs have hands-on courses in cyber intelligence, cyber counterintelligence, malware analysis, incident command, incident response, terrorism and cyber conflict. Each course was developed from the ground up with input from the faculty who have in-depth expertise in those subject areas. Many schools simply put together a combination of courses that they've already had in place for many years, perhaps in computer science, electrical engineering, systems engineering or other traditional courses. We took a very opposite approach than that, and we developed specialized courses that precisely pinpoint the needs within cybersecurity. So, our online Cybersecurity programs consist of a series of courses that really are at the leading edge, and it's this type of forward-thinking education that will help our students become leaders within the field."

High growth projected for Cyber Security jobs

Graduates with this advanced understanding and skillset have a bright future in front of them. As DFI illustrates, "The cyber security manpower shortage is primarily at the high end of the capability scale, commanding salaries of more than $200,000 to $250,000." The Bureau of Labor Statistics also projects that career growth for information security analysts to grow 37 percent within the next 10 years, which is exceedingly faster than other occupations.

Utica College's online B.S. and M.S. in Cybersecurity programs are perfectly poised to prepare students to meet this growing demand and help defend against any and all digital threats. Discover more about Utica's B.S. and M.S in Cybersecurity degree programs by requesting further information or calling (866) 295-3106 to speak with a program manager.