NDSU trains students for a growing field
North Dakota State has debuted its new Ph.D. option for those in the graduate studies of computer science.
The new addition, a program for cybersecurity education, comes mainly from high demand in the field, according to Jeremy Straub, associate director for the NDSU Institute of Cybersecurity Education and Research.
As the field of cybersecurity grows, so does the demand for professionals to teach in that field. This gave birth to the cybersecurity education Ph.D. program that is now offered at NDSU.
“We wanted to create a pipeline for people who want to teach [cybersecurity],” Straub said.
The program builds off the existing cybersecurity graduate program, with the difference being the courses are tailored to individuals that wish to become professors in the field.
It’s also a response to large class sizes. Straub noted that in the past they’ve filled what was supposed to be a 40-person class with nearly 80 students due to demand and graduation requirements.
“There was a necessity for additional instruction,” Straub said. How does a university create more professors in a growing field? Teach them.
The courses offered today take a more holistic approach to a complex field of instruction, combining computer science knowledge with cybersecurity and teaching courses.
“We wanted to create a pipeline for people who want to teach (cybersecurity),”Jeremy Straub, associate director for the NDSU Institute of Cybersecurity Education and Research
Though the institute has not changed anything specific about the programs they offer, the new addition does offer general guidelines and policies to prepare students to teach at a 2-year or 4-year university.
The Cybersecurity Institute itself has existed for about three years and focuses on “cutting edge research,” such as information trust, interaction between electric systems, systems security and student education.
Cybersecurity approaches the challenge of addressing both physical security and electronic security. They also approach network security, ensuring the safety of stored data.
On one hand, people can tamper with and destroy information. On the other hand, they can access that information to give themselves a competitive edge.
This is the challenge that those in cybersecurity deal with.
Ultimately, the program will emphasize professionals in cybersecurity working and managing classrooms to prepare students entering this growing field.