UMUC Enrolls Hundreds in First Online Cybersecurity Degree Programs

Industry leaders helped design bachelor’s and master’s degree programs that address the growing need for cybersecurity professionals worldwide


By Nick Kelly (nkelly@mghus.com) |   July 14, 2010

ADELPHI, MD (July 14, 2010)—University of Maryland University College (UMUC) announced today that applications are pouring in for its new bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in cybersecurity, which launch this fall. The programs were designed—with direct input from a team of industry leaders—to provide the practical and theoretical training needed to fill the tens of thousands of new positions projected to open in cybersecurity in both the public and private sectors. The new UMUC offerings include a Bachelor of Science in cybersecurity and Master of Science programs in cybersecurity and cybersecurity policy.

Lt. Gen. Harry D. Raduege, who chairs the Deloitte Center for Cyber Innovation, also served as chair of the UMUC committee that shaped the structure and curricula of the new programs.

“The Internet has changed the way we live, work and prosper through an online infrastructure that is increasingly vulnerable and subject to attack,” Lt. Gen. Raduege said. “The threat presented by cyber espionage, identity theft, data theft and denial-of-service attacks must be countered by properly trained professionals, highlighting a tremendous need in this vital and growing field. I can say with confidence that the curriculum for the new UMUC cybersecurity programs was structured with one goal in mind—to graduate professionals ready and able to address these growing threats.”

UMUC’s cybersecurity programs focus on coherent solutions that leverage the effectiveness of integrated and coordinated security measures, but that also adapt to the industry’s growing and evolving needs. The programs respond to several recent calls to action, including the comprehensive bill introduced by the Senate Committee on Homeland Security, which seeks to strengthen the nation’s networks and critical infrastructure against cyber attacks. In May, the Department of Defense announced the launch of its new Cyber Command, with a stated goal of creating 21,000 military and civilian cybersecurity jobs worldwide.

“UMUC’s mission is to offer top-quality educational programs that serve adult students while responding to the workforce needs of our state, nation and world,” UMUC President Susan C. Aldridge said. “With that in mind, I am especially pleased with our new undergraduate and graduate degree programs in cybersecurity, which address the critical need to protect our nation’s vital and growing cyber infrastructure while also addressing the serious workforce shortages of skilled professionals within the cybersecurity industry.”

The bachelor’s program will prepare students to be leaders in the techniques, policies, operational procedures, and technologies that secure and defend the integrity, authentication and confidentiality of information and information systems. The degree requires students to complete 120 credits, including 41 credits in general education, 33 credits of major coursework and 46 credits in the minor, electives and other degree requirements. Students can choose to complete the program fully online or in a hybrid format that combines online study with on-site instruction. Graduates of this program will have completed courses in computer forensics, cyber crime and cyber terrorism, and security issues in emerging technologies.

The two master’s degree programs—in cybersecurity and cybersecurity policy—will offer students an interdisciplinary approach to the field, providing practitioners with the framework and knowledge to protect an organization’s cyber assets. The programs focus on prevention, detection, countering and recovery from cyber incidents, while the cybersecurity policy program places additional emphasis on examining strategies for societal responses to cybersecurity threats at enterprise, national and global levels. The roles of government, interorganizational alliances and international cooperatives are explored, along with legal concepts such as privacy, intellectual property and civil liberties. Completing a UMUC master’s degree in cybersecurity or cybersecurity policy will require a total of 36 credits of coursework, consisting of six 6-credit sequential online courses. Students will also be required to complete special internship projects.

UMUC is recognized by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Security Agency as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education.