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UMGC Cyber Connections – About


About Cyber Connections

Cyber Connections is a blog for cybersecurity professionals and students. Here, we share cybersecurity news, insights, and opinion from UMGC faculty, partners, students, and staff. If you are interested in becoming a blog contributor, please email our blog editor, Alex Kasten.

About UMGC Cybersecurity Programs

With innovative online educational programs, an award-winning competition team and industry connections, UMGC is changing the landscape of cyber security. Find out more about UMGC’s leadership in cybersecurity.

About the UMGC Cybersecurity Advisory Board

UMGC has enlisted some of the top cyber security consultants in the U.S. to review its programs, ensuring the curriculum keeps pace with emerging industry trends and technologies. Advisory board members include Lieutenant General Harry D. Raduege Jr. (USAF, Ret.), Sam Arwood, Lieutenant General John Campbell (USAF, Ret.), Mark J. Gerencser, Rear Admiral Elizabeth A. Hight (USN, Ret.), Catherine G. Kuenzel , Robert F. Lentz, James (Jim) F. X. Payne, Marcus (Marc) H. Sachs, and L. William (Bill) Varner. Meet the advisory board here!

About UMGC’s Center for Security Studies

The UMUC Center for Security Studies (CSS) provides educational resources, networking and career training opportunities for working adults pursuing security studies, and works with industry and government to meet the cybersecurity and homeland security needs of our nation.

Members of CSS include distinguished faculty members, chairs, program directors, academic directors and other experts. They participate in national-level efforts to educate leaders and make significant progress in information assurance and homeland security fields by:

  • Conducting applied research
  • Providing advisory and consulting services
  • Assembling and delivering specialized courses
  • Developing innovative teaching tools such as remote access laboratories, network testbeds, interactive learning objects and simulations
  • Hosting conferences, colloquia, workshops and webcasts on the cutting edge of cybersecurity and homeland security topics
  • Partnering with industry and government to develop new programs and deliveries in the areas of information assurance and homeland security
  • Establishing and administering scholarships and fellowships supported by individuals and public- and private-sector organizations

About the UMGC Cyber Competition Team

Learn from and with the Best! UMGC’s cyber competition team—made up of UMGC students, alumni, and faculty—competes on the local, national, and international level. These competitions allow cyber competitors to hone their hands-on skills in areas such as cryptology, network offense/defense, digital forensics, and policy. Test your skills and join this elite group of cyber warriors who continue to dominate industry competitions, bringing home first place wins in:

  • 2015 DiploHack
  • 2014 Global CyberLympics
  • 2014 North American CyberLympics
  • 2014 Maryland Cyber Challenge
  • 2013 DoD Cyber Crime Center Digital Forensics Challenge

2 thoughts on “About”

Loyce Pailen
November 7, 2016 at 9:01 pm

Hello All – I’d like to start a discussion on how could we, as cybersecurity professionals, make a positive impact on the profession by lowering the barriers of entry to cybersecurity education and careers. We all know that the workforce needs fully outpace the development, education, and training of cyber professionals – where can we change policies, hiring practices, certification attainment, K-12 education, etc. to make a long-term difference?

Prof D
July 26, 2018 at 9:44 am

I think the 5 tips for Building a Successful Cybersecurity Education Program by Wylie Wong could be a start-up initiative.

1. Consult with Local Businesses
Universities and colleges should create an external advisory group and talk to IT professionals and employers in their local market to understand their workforce needs in cybersecurity.
Talk to the major employers, find out what they need students to do when they graduate, so they can hire them. Build professional relationship with local employers to open up internship opportunities for students.

2. Support from Campus Leadership Is Critical
Build programs to provide the funding needed to build computer labs full of servers, high-powered computers, a network made up of Cisco Systems networking gear and Palo Alto Networks next-generation firewalls, and high-speed internet access.
Fund training to allow professors to get the required IT certifications they needed to teach their courses.

3. Teach Critical Thinking, Communication and Writing Skills
When UMUC met with its external advisory group, the university learned that employers want students who can think and write critically, and communicate and collaborate with their peers, in addition to having the necessary technical skills.

4. Seek Advice from Other Colleges
Colleges should reach out to others that have developed cybersecurity programs to learn tips, best practices and lessons learned.

5. Recruit from Local High Schools
Attract students to new cybersecurity programs at all levels including; colleagues, juniors and seniors at local high schools, and colleges. Recruit women and minorities, which have historically been underrepresented in the IT field.

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