TAMPA — The University of South Florida’s College of Engineering plans to offer a new degree program that will prepare students for careers in one of the country’s fastest growing industries: cybersecurity.
According to a press release, the bachelor’s degree program will be housed in the college’s department of computer science and engineering, and it will be the first undergraduate degree program of its kind among Florida’s 12 public universities.
“With the growth of the Tampa Bay area as technology hub, the cybersecurity degree will provide employers with a technical workforce able to protect a company’s assets,” states Robert Bishop, dean of the USF College of Engineering, in the release. “Cybercrime shows no signs of slowing down and the high demand for cybersecurity workers, coupled with a limited supply of talent, means that graduates going into the field can earn high salaries performing a variety of jobs.”
Experts predict jobs in the cybersecurity industry will grow by nearly 30% through 2026, with a reported median salary for information security analysts at more than $95,000, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The anticipated growth, combined with the opportunity for graduates to find high-paying jobs, are the primary reasons behind USF’s development of this new degree.
The USF College of Engineering expects to enroll the first 50 new students into the program this fall, with approximately 40 other students expected to transfer in from other programs across the university, according to the release.