Cybersecurity is a national imperative. During his 2013 State of the Union speech, President Barack Obama issued an executive order that the nation make improvements in cybersecurity. In response, students in the joint College of Charleston and The Citadel master’s degree in computer and information sciences program will be able to select a specialization in cybersecurity, starting in fall 2013.
“Cybersecurity should be a growing concern for every individual, company, and government agency,” says Renee McCauley, director of the M.S. in computer and information sciences program. “This specialization follows the academic requirements of the NSA Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Operations in building an agile, highly skilled federal workforce capable of responding to a dynamic and rapidly developing array of threats.”
The new specialization will require students to take courses in advanced cybersecurity, advanced operating systems, data communications and networking, and privacy and security issues. The NSA CAE in Cyber Operations requirements specify the topics that must be covered in courses. They include low-level programming languages, software reverse engineering, operating system theory, networking, cellular and mobile communications, discrete math, legal issues, security fundamentals and vulnerabilities.
Cybersecurity has been on the forefront for several years. In 2010, President Obama established the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) – a nationally coordinated effort focused on cybersecurity awareness, education, training, and professional development.