St. Bonaventure University and Hilbert College announced that they will each offer Bachelor of Science degree programs in Cybersecurity beginning in the fall of 2016. They are the only higher education institutions in the region to offer undergraduate majors in this high-demand field.
The two institutions will share faculty resources to offer the programs, taking advantage of St. Bonaventure's expertise in its Department of Computer Science and Hilbert's strength in its Department of Computer Security and Information Assurance.
No travel between campuses will be necessary for students or faculty, as shared courses will be offered via distance-learning technology.
Students in the cybersecurity program will learn the appropriate tools, techniques, policies, and technologies required to identify, analyze, mitigate, and communicate the risks of information systems.
"These programs offer emphasis in both the technical and managerial sides of the cybersecurity field, which distinguishes them from other programs out there," said Alan Katerinsky, Hilbert's Cybersecurity program director and professor of Computer Security and Information Assurance.
"As a complement to our general education curriculum, we have also interwoven ethics across the cybersecurity curriculum, which is of particular concern given the myriad ethical challenges that will face today's and tomorrow's cybersecurity leaders and technicians," said Dr. Steven Andrianoff, St. Bonaventure's Cybersecurity program director and chairperson of the Department of Computer Science.
The Cybersecurity major will prepare students for careers as information systems security professionals, responsible for information systems and security of those systems.
"Given the growing demand for highly skilled information assurance professionals, the cybersecurity program is a perfect example of an innovative program that meets the educational needs and interests of today's students," said Andrianoff.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that between 2012 and 2022, information security analyst positions will grow at a rate of 37 percent. Cybersecurity positions rose 73 percent in the five-year period ending in 2012 — 3.5 times faster than postings for computer jobs as a whole, according to Burning Glass Technologies, a labor market analytics firm.
U.S. News & World Report ranked "information security analyst" third among the best technology jobs, eighth among the top 100 professions and 15th among the highest-paying jobs.
The concept for these programs was developed during the process of investigating a possible strategic alliance between the two schools. A grant from The John R. Oishei Foundation supported the process that included a faculty think tank which envisioned opportunities for academic collaboration. Cybersecurity was identified as one of several potential areas of academic opportunity for the schools.
This collaboration expands upon the partnership between St. Bonaventure and Hilbert College that started more than two decades ago. St. Bonaventure continues to offer graduate programs on the campus of Hilbert College in a weekend format. The institutions are two of more than 20 Franciscan colleges and universities in the U.S.
For additional information about the major in cybersecurity at St. Bonaventure, visit www.sbu.edu/cybersecurity.
For additional information about the major in cybersecurity at Hilbert College, visit: www.hilbert.edu/cybersecurity.
Both institutions encourage prospective students interested in the program to complete their application as soon as possible; space in the first cohorts that will enroll in the fall of 2016 is limited.