New Master's Degree in Cybersecurity Approved

The Maryland Higher Education Commission has approved our new Master of Science in Cybersecurity, and we are excitedabout the career opportunities it will give our students.

Cybersecurity is the ability to protect or defend the use of cyberspace from cyber attacks. It is an emerging discipline focused on the development of methods and techniques for the protection of data, information, systems, networks and infrastructural assets.

The need for cybersecurity professionals in the region has been growing rapidly, and the demand is staggering! In the Washington, D.C., metro area alone, there are more than 47,000 unfilled cybersecurity jobs, and in the Baltimore metro area, the number exceeds 10,000 unfilled positions. The new program provides students with a comprehensive cybersecurity education and will produce graduates with the knowledge and skills required to fill advanced technical and management positions in cybersecurity. The program addresses the core subject areas and skill sets identified in the Cybersecurity Workforce Framework by the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Careers and Studies (NICCS).

Hood’s cybersecurity program is a sub-discipline of computer science and information technology. The goals of the program are to provide students with a comprehensive cybersecurity education and produce graduates with the knowledge and skills required to fill advanced technical and management positions in cybersecurity. Students will learn about computer forensics, defending networks and firewalls, and configuring and deploying new systems.

Hood’s 30-credit cybersecurity master’s degree builds on the College’s existing MHEC-approved graduate certificate in cybersecurity. This master’s program is designed for technical and non-technical students with a bachelor’s degree. Students with a technical background will jump right in the core program courses while students without technical backgrounds can take two accelerated “bridge” courses to get a common foundation and continue with robust subject matter training necessary in today’s cybersecurity job market. The structure of the program allows students to enter the program from different disciplines and provides a common foundation and robust subject matter training necessary in today’s cybersecurity job market. The degree will expand upon the considerable expertise, curriculum and laboratory facilities already available in the Department of Computer Science and Information Technology.

The program culminates with a highly distinctive, team-based capstone project, linked to local industry and government partners. Students will work with faculty and partners to develop suitable research and project questions; collect data; design systems; develop software, protocols, methods and techniques; synthesize their findings or work artifacts into a final product; and present their findings to the partners and scholarly venues.

The degree is designed to address the core subject areas and skill sets identified in the Cybersecurity Workforce Framework by the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Careers and Studies (NICCS) 2.

Enrollments are on a rolling basis, so prospective students can start at either the fall or the spring semesters. We are already processing applications for classes starting on Aug. 21. For more information or help with enrolling, contact the Graduate School at 301-696-3600 or gofurther@hood.edu.

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