Columbus State launches new online Cybersecurity Master’s Degree

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COLUMBUS, Ga (WRBL) — Students will now be able to obtain a Master’s Degree in Cybersecurity Management. The University System of Georgia Board of Regents approved Columbus State University’s request to establish a Master of Science with a major in Cybersecurity Managment.

Students can begin pursuing this degree in Spring 2018. This is a 30 semester- hour program housed in the D. Abbott Turner College of Business’ TSYS School of Computer Science.

Chris Markwood, president of Columbus State University, says the demand for this program is very clear. It also foreshadows future developments.

This new degree is designed to appeal to working professionals, and is the next step in the development of our new TSYS Center for Cybersecurity,”

This degree arrives just in time because cybersecurity jobs are in demand. The Cybersecurity Supply/Demand Heat Map developed for the Department of Homeland Security says the total cybersecurity job openings at the national level are 348,975, with approximately 12,783 positions in Georgia, and with 597 employment vacancies in Columbus. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “more than 209,000 cybersecurity jobs in the U.S. are unfilled, and postings have increased by 74 percent over the past five years.”

This new program also brings new hires. The school recently hired Michael Barker, a former Atlanta technology expert and state-licensed private detective specializing in digital forensics as the director of the new TSYS Center for Cybersecurity. Barker is a recognized industry leader in cyber security, information security, and digital forensics.

The National Security Agency (NSA) is funding the initial establishment costs and enhancements for this new program. An endowment from TSYS will also fund this program.  Wayne Summers, director of the TSYS School of Computer Science, says the gift from TSYS also helped CSU purchase current software and hardware to support program content and created the new cybersecurity center on the first floor of the Center for Commerce and Technology.

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