Published Sept. 18, 2012
By Ty Beaver, Tri-City Herald
As cyber attacks increase on government agencies and private company networks, the need for computer specialists to defend against them is growing.
Starting next week, a new cybersecurity program at Columbia Basin College aims to prepare students to thwart attacks on online networks from foreign governments to isolated disgruntled hackers.
The school announced Monday new programs for a one-year certificate and two-year associate's degree in cybersecurity for the fall quarter, starting Monday.
And next fall, CBC will offer a bachelor of applied science degree in cybersecurity.
Department of Energy contractor Battelle, which operates the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, is providing $118,000 for the bachelor's degree program. That money will go toward developing the program so CBC can seek approval for the course from the state.
"The new CBC program will help fill that workforce need while at the same time provide a critical service locally and nationally," PNNL Director Mike Kluse said in a news release.
CBC already offers programs in computer science that include courses on computer security, but school spokesman Frank Murray said this will be the first time CBC has offered a program specifically in computer and network security.
The bachelor's program will start small, with just 18 students being admitted next fall. CBC isn't carving any money out of its current revenues to pay for it as it will be supported solely through fees, grants and donations.
CBC President Rich Cummins said current computer science instructors, who have worked hard to stay at the forefront of their field, will largely be teaching the program's classes.
Cummins said the programs will meet growing demand for workers who can defend data and networks belonging to public agencies and private firms.
"Although cybersecurity specialists are in high demand nationally, they are in even higher demand in the local region as a result of the advanced technical infrastructure and work performed in our community," Cummins said in a statement.
The new programs are the latest partnership between CBC and a private corporate donor. Earlier this summer, the school broke ground on a new planetarium that will be housed in a renovated classroom building.
Hanford contractor Bechtel National provided $100,000 to the $1.2 million project, which is expected to be used by Mid-Columbia schoolchildren, as well as by CBC's astronomy program.
The school released a list of capital projects worth $122 million in mid-August. Cummins said the school would look at public and private partnerships to build those projects and for other goals in the future as state funding continues to decline.
Published with permission of the Tri-City Herald. Additional news stories can be accessed online at the Tri-City Herald.
Home | Campus Safety | Catalog | Campus Map | Contact Information | Parking Information
2600 N. 20th Ave., Pasco, WA 99301 | PHONE 509.547.0511 | FAX 509.546.0401
© 2011 Columbia Basin College. All Rights Reserved. | Website Created by Vision Internet.