Cyber Range [cy·ber I rānj] – is a virtual environment used for cyberwarfare training and cybertechnology development. It provides tools that help strengthen the stability, security, and performance of cyber-infrastructures and IT systems used by government and military agencies, and appears on college campuses everywhere.
What an interesting time to be on the front lines in the cybersecurity industry! I remember my time back in college when Communications, Business, and Political Science were the hot majors based on industry outlooks. Who could have fathomed 20 years later that cyberwarfare training and cybersecurity majors are now on the top of the list?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics outlook predicts that’s information security analysts’ jobs are on pace to grow 28% between 2018-2026. The demand for trained security analysts is growing fast with the number of jobs in 2018 hovering around 100,000. Students looking to obtain a cybersecurity degree are projected to spend upwards of $23,000 to $61,000 a year depending on the school they decide to attend. However, the ROI of a cybersecurity degree is worth calculating because in 2017 the median pay in the industry was $95,510.
Many schools today offer various degrees and certificates. Here are some example of certifications that are in high demand:
Augusta University works hand in hand with the Department of Defense. Currently being built on their campus is the Georgia Cyber Innovation and Training Center. Students who partake in a cybersecurity major at Augusta University will get their training at this 150,000 square foot, 50 million dollar investment cyber range.
Regent University Institute for Cybersecurity has several majors dedicated to Cyber Training and Education. A student can focus on subject matters such as Executive Cyber Management and Risk, Asset Protection, Cyber Proficiency, and Basic Security Concepts.
Grand Canyon University works with the Arizona Cyberwarfare Range. A privately funded non-profit and 100% volunteer driven organization that provides the next generation of cybersecurity professionals. They have several degrees that specialize in cybersecurity.
There are also several key certificates that you can earn to solidify your stance in the cybersecurity sector. These include: CISSP – Certified Information Systems Security Professional; CISA – Certified Information Systems Auditor; CEH – Certified Ethical Hacker; GSEC – GIAC Security Essentials Certification
Interested in finding a college that offers cyber degrees, but not sure where to begin? Check out CyberDegrees.org where you can search for schools near you and find the right specialization, too.
Knowledge is Power
Earning your degree or certificate will validate you and secure your place at the forefront of cybersecurity innovation. It will also position you as a valuable asset in growing industries such as Education, Healthcare, and National Defense.
In a time when cyber ranges are becoming all the rage on college campuses, look for our young leaders of tomorrow to be more skilled and positioned to close the workforce gap in Cybersecurity.
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Interested in conducting your own research in cyber ranges? Check out this free open cyber challenge platform you can set up that will challenge advanced skill sets in a real-life learning environment. The Open Cyber Challenge has teams defend/attack/investigate a network and/or data center with realistic attacks in a safe environment.