As cybersecurity continues to be a hot topic in colleges and universities, it’s also becoming an increasingly important part of the military. Recently, the United States Air Force Academy announced that they are adding a new network security major designed to help cadets “fly, fight, and win in cyberspace.”
According to Dr. Martin Carlisle, the head of the Computer Science Department for the 2014-2015 academic year, “the computer and network security major touches on topics designed to help cadets understand what the cyberspace domain is and how the Air Force will establish cyberspace superiority in future conflicts.” Dr, Carlisle continued that, “the Air Force Academy is committed to producing highly-qualified officers to serve in cyber career fields. This is a time when the Academy is reducing majors, which shows how important we think this mission field is.”
The curriculum is designed so cadets won’t have to decide on the major immediately; interested cadets would be able to start the major midway through their academic careers if they choose. Currently, three juniors and roughly 25 sophomores are enrolled in the major.
Cadets majoring in computer network security will start in a class that introduces them to software reverse engineering, in order to analyze and understand viruses. By knowing how malware functions, cadets will eventually be able to block it from their network, or take out its command and control mechanisms. Another available class will focus on computer forensics that involves tracing attacks, figuring out how an attack was carried out, and gathering evidence.
By 2018, the need for qualified information security professionals is expected to grow by nearly 30%, much faster than most other occupations. To help meet the need for more information security professional, Jones & Bartlett Learning has developed the first comprehensive program solution designed to prepare students for success in IT Security, Cybersecurity, Information Assurance, and Information System Security. This innovative Information Systems & Security Assurance (ISSA) curriculum, developed by certified IT professionals, combines first-of-its kind technology, student-friendly texts, and complete instructor support to facilitate seamless implementation, ensure improved student outcomes and increased retention rates.