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Coffee Talk
Business Observer Friday, Aug. 24, 2018 1 year ago

College upgrades program to include cybersecurity

USF Sarasota-Manatee has upgraded its IT degree to cybersecurity and IT.

There’s a new cybersecurity sheriff in town.

The University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee is upgrading its information technology degree to cybersecurity and information technology. The change is happening this fall, with the bachelor’s degree program a response to increased threats.

According to a press release about the program, cybersecurity jobs will grow nearly 30% through 2026.

Ehsan Sheybani, assistant professor of information systems and decision sciences, tells Coffee Talk the basic idea of the program is to give students exposure to different technologies in information systems and cybersecurity concepts through a four-year program. He also says statistics point to the fact that within the next two or three years, there will be a shortage of about one million IT and cybersecurity workers.

It’s not just businesses that need more cybersecurity workers to combat increased threats. Cybersecurity is important for individuals, Sheybani says. “We are vulnerable to cyber attacks, too,” he says.

A $100,000 grant was awarded to USF Sarasota-Manatee and Florida International University from the Florida Center for Cybersecurity at USF in Tampa. That money will be used to upgrade the program through cybersecurity classes and an advanced cybersecurity laboratory.

Sheybani says at least 100 students locally are starting the new program. The school is also looking into expanding the program into a master’s degree.




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