A Critical Shortage
The shortage of cybersecurity workers in the United States is currently in the hundreds of thousands. Take a look at the Cybersecurity Supply/Demand Heat Map to see the situation in your state, https://www.cyberseek.org/heatmap.html [external link]. Many students and teachers do not even know about cybersecurity careers.
What should students learn?
There are many starting points for a career in cybersecurity. Networking, systems engineering, IT support, software development, risk analysis, policy development, and security intelligence are all roles within the cybersecurity domain. The High School Cybersecurity Curriculum Guidelines, https://teachcyber.org/cybersecurity-teaching-resources/curriculum-guidelines/ enable educators to effectively plan properly sequenced activities introducing the broad field of cybersecurity. The Guidelines were designed by educators from high school and higher education, who collectively have vast experience teaching computer science and cybersecurity.
How to engage students?
Building a diverse pipeline of cybersecurity talent requires multiple entry points for our middle and high school students. Clubs, camps, competitions, internships, scholarships, awareness initiatives, middle school and high school coursework can provide exploratory experiences. Existing computer science courses are a natural starting point, but this approach may miss the mark in attracting a diverse population of students. Forensic science, civics, psychology, mathematics are all disciplines related to cybersecurity. Engaging students beyond computer science and IT courses is imperative. Take a look at our coursework, https://teachcyber.org/cybersecurity-teaching-resources/lessons/
What about teacher preparation?
Teacher professional development in cybersecurity is lacking. A Morning Consult poll on behalf of IBM reported that 54% of teachers did not know or had not received basic cybersecurity training. Developing teacher content knowledge is a challenge. The National Cybersecurity Teaching Academy, https://teachcyber.org/ncta-information/, is a first of its kind initiative supported by the National Security Agency. Teach Cyber offers online and in-person workshops. Contact us for pricing and scheduling.
Wherever you are in the process of exploring workforce needs, curriculum, student learning outcomes, or teacher professional development, we are ready to listen. Our mission is to nurture a sustainable cybersecurity education ecosystem.
For more information or to discuss how we can work with your school district, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org