Last week we focused on what Businesses and Industry Leaders can do to create a more stable and approachable pathway to cybersecurity professions. This week we’re focusing on what educators can do to foster students’ awareness and interest as well as prepare them for this career path. Educators play a vital role in the Cyber Interstate™ – a collaborative ecosystem that provides opportunities, both educational and career oriented, to individuals at all levels of the workforce.
To Educators: The basics of cybersecurity should be embedded into general education requirements, just like the fundamentals of mathematics and language arts. As users of devices and the internet, students are vulnerable to risk and need to know the basics of privacy and security. Since cyber safety touches nearly every industry, awareness and education are critical for all students, regardless of their chosen field of study. Creating true 21st century learning environments is paramount for the success and sustainability of our workforce across the country as well as for our nation’s security.
According to the site, Cyber Seek™, there are more than 1 million cybersecurity jobs in the United States. Of that number, over 300,000 are unfilled positions, many of these paying close to $100,000 per year. This means the supply for cybersecurity jobs is far below the demand. As educators, we need to ensure our students know about these as viable career choices and are given the education necessary to pursue them. We want the next generation to list Cyber Security Engineer as something they want to be when they grow up, and that starts in the classroom.
The National Integrated Cyber Education Resource Center is already working with educators and districts across the country to provide project-based curriculum resources that integrate 21st century strategies into a cyber context, to ensure our nation’s youth are prepared for an attainable, needed and lucrative career path. For questions on how you can get involved with cyber education, contact us through our website or you can email us directly.
The Department of Homeland Security has developed this useful guide with best practices on supporting cyber education in the classroom.