Cybersecurity Degrees in Arizona- This resource covers all of Arizona’s cybersecurity-related educational and professional possibilities. A look at specific cybersecurity degree possibilities in the state, as well as how local and regional economic developments may effect employment options, is included in the following material.

The majority of people associate Arizona with desert golf courses and retirement homes. However, Arizona’s economy has been one of the fastest-growing in the country for several years. Education, healthcare, and construction are leading the way in terms of job creation and personal income. And this fast-paced expansion, which is substantially above the national average, is anticipated to continue in the coming years.

The top employers in Arizona’s economy in 2019 were, in order of size, trade, transportation, and utilities; education and healthcare services; professional and business services; and government, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

While all businesses are now vulnerable to cyber attacks, healthcare, commercial services, and government are among the most visible targets. As a result, these businesses are also among the most active users of cybersecurity services. It also explains why Arizona has over 20,000 cybersecurity professionals on staff.

Arizona is currently not one of the most active providers of cybersecurity-related educational programmes. The state government, on the other hand, has made cybersecurity a top priority for the future and is taking steps to ensure that Arizona is one of the top providers of cybersecurity talent.

There are a lot of good options for cybersecurity experts who want to continue their education. To remain a leader, though, Arizona’s colleges and universities will need to expand their degree and credential programmes. This is likely to happen during the next several years.

Growing Importance of Cybersecurity in Arizona

Arizona’s governor signed an executive order in 2018 to establish the Arizona Cybersecurity Team, or ACT. The team, which includes specialists from the state, local, and federal governments, as well as the commercial sector and higher institutions, has a three-pronged approach.

First and foremost, ACT is responsible for defending Arizonans from cyber-attacks. Second, the group will try to recruit top cybersecurity experts to Arizona. Finally, ACT will encourage educators to develop degree and certification programmes that will result in a continuous supply of elite talent.

While the state government may have been a little late to the game than other states, it appears to be just as committed to making Arizona a desirable location for cybersecurity businesses and specialists.

Cybersecurity Degrees in Arizona

To date, Arizona colleges and universities have built a reasonably robust collection of degree programmes for students and professionals interested in cybersecurity. All degrees are offered, particularly for state residents who can attend on-campus forms. And students who live in the state will find a fast expanding job market with an insufficient number of competent applicants for open positions. However, considering the current scale of the state’s cybersecurity community and the goal of becoming an information security leader, more possibilities might be expected.

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Because the Arizona Cybersecurity Team has only been in place for a little over a year, any influence it will have is yet to be seen. If successful, ACT should encourage Arizona’s educational institutions to act quickly to expand the number of cybersecurity degrees and certifications available.

ASSOCIATE’S DEGREE

Cybersecurity was once thought to be a backroom job by hooded 20-something hackers. This isn’t the case anymore. The industry has evolved into a far more complex profession in recent years.

Most information security employment paths now require a bachelor’s degree. However, there are still plenty of entry-level job positions that require an associate’s degree, thanks to a shortage of qualified experts. An associate’s degree might be a suitable first step for those who don’t have the time or means to complete a full four-year degree programme. It’s a good idea to pursue a bachelor’s degree after landing an entry-level job and gaining some experience. Coursework from an associate’s degree can normally be applied to bachelor’s degree requirements to speed up the process of earning a second degree.

Campus-based associate’s degrees in Arizona

There are now four options for earning an associate’s degree in cybersecurity at Arizona community colleges. Puma Community College offers two of these choices. All four degree programmes are available on campus, and there are no online choices for associate’s degrees offered by Arizona educational institutions at this time. The four current degree tracks are shown in the table below.

School City Program Website
Cochise College Douglas Associate of Applied Science in Cybersecurity
Estrella Mountain Community College Avondale AAS in IT and Power Systems Security
Northland Pioneer College Holbrook AAS in Cybersecurity
Pima Community College Tucson Associate of Applied Science in Computer Programmer / Analyst – Cyber Operations Programming Concentration
Pima Community College Tucson Associate of Applied Science in Computer Systems Administration / Networking – Cyber Security Focus

BACHELOR’S DEGREE

Most cybersecurity employment choices now demand a bachelor’s degree as a baseline prerequisite. Of course, a bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity is ideal, but other majors can be just as appealing to companies. Certain cybersecurity occupations can also benefit from a solid foundation in computer science, information technology, or any of the typical STEM courses of study. If you prefer a bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity, there are a growing number of choices available, both on campus and online.

Campus-based bachelor’s degrees in Arizona

On-campus bachelor’s degree alternatives are currently available at five Arizona higher education institutions. The University of Advancing Technology, in Tempe, Arizona, offers three of these programmes. See the table below for a complete list of campus-based possibilities.

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School City Program Website
Arizona State University Tempe B.S.E. in Computer Systems Engineering – Cybersecurity
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Prescott Bachelor of Science in Cyber Intelligence and Security
University of Advancing Technology Tempe Bachelor of Science in Technology Forensics
University of Advancing Technology Tempe Bachelors of Science in Network Security Degree
University of Advancing Technology Tempe Bachelor of Science in Technonlogy Forensics Degree
University of Arizona Sierra Vista Bachelor of Applied Science with an emphasis in Cyber Operations

Online bachelor’s degrees in Arizona

At the moment, Arizona colleges and universities offer two bachelor’s degree options in cybersecurity. The University of Advancing Technology offers an online network security BS degree programme. A BAS degree in cyber operations is available from the University of Arizona.

MASTER’S DEGREE

Cybersecurity professionals who want to advance their careers and work in senior and management-level information security jobs should devote the time and resources necessary to earn a master’s degree in cybersecurity. A master’s degree is often required for top information security positions, such as chief information security officer. A master’s degree is also required for those choosing a different professional route, such as academia, research, or cybersecurity consultancy.

Campus-Based Master’s Degrees in Arizona

As shown in the chart below, Arizona colleges and institutions now offer four master’s degree programmes in cybersecurity in on-campus presentations. Three of these alternatives are supplied by state institutions (two by Arizona State University and one by the University of Arizona), suggesting that the state government’s effort to make Arizona a cybersecurity leader is gaining traction.

School City Program Website
Arizona State University Tempe M.S. in Computer Science – Cybersecurity
Arizona State University Tempe Master of Computer Science – Cybersecurity
University of Arizona Tucson AZSecure Cybersecurity Fellowship Program (MS-MIS)
University of Advancing Technology Tempe Master of Science in Cyber Security

Online master’s degrees in Arizona

Of the three online master’s degree programs in cybersecurity available from Arizona institutions, two are offered by the University of Arizona. See below for more information and links.

School City Program Website
University of Advanced Technology Tempe Master of Science in Cyber Security
University of Arizona Tucson MS in Management Information Systems with Emphasis in Information Assurance
University of Arizona Tucson Online Master’s in Cybersecurity

PhD DEGREES

Doctoral degrees are often only required for research and academic job pathways for cybersecurity experts. PhDs are also preferred in several advanced c-suite business positions.

Campus-based Ph.D. degrees in Arizona

In Arizona, there are currently two cybersecurity PhD programmes and no online options. The University of Arizona has developed a PhD programme in Management Information Science with a focus in Information Assurance, and Arizona State University provides a PhD in Computer Science – Cybersecurity.

CERTIFICATIONS

Cybersecurity certification programmes can be tailored to achieve a variety of objectives. Some offer an introduction to information security and, in some cases, a foot in the door to an entry-level position, or at the very least, a stepping stone toward a degree. Other certification programmes are designed for people who are already working in cybersecurity and want to advance their knowledge in a specific area, such as penetration testing. Others are intended to serve as a stand-in or stepping stone to a full advanced degree.

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Campus-based cybersecurity certifications in Arizona

In Arizona, three cybersecurity certification programmes are now available on campus. For more information, see the section below.

School City Program Website
Estrella Mountain Community College Avondale IT Security Associate Certificate
Northland Pioneer College Holbrook CIS – Cybersecurity (CAS)
Northland Pioneer College Holbrook CIS – Cybersecurity (CP)
Yavapai College Prescott Cybersecurity Specialist Certificate

Online cybersecurity certifications in Arizona

Arizona colleges and universities now offer two online certification opportunities. The University of Arizona offers an Enterprise Security Certificate, and the University of Phoenix offers an Advanced Cybersecurity Certificate programme for undergraduates.

Cybersecurity Jobs in Arizona

The demand for cybersecurity workers is surpassing supply around the world, and the disparity is widening. The United States is experiencing the same problem, with a scarcity of information security workers in Arizona as well. Arizona already employs a sizable number of cybersecurity experts. According to Cyberseek, the state employed 21,212 workers in some aspect of cybersecurity from October 2018 to September 2019. During that time, Arizona firms advertised 12,822 information security job positions, indicating a high and unmet demand. Phoenix accounted for well over 10,000 of the state’s cybersecurity job opportunities, which is not surprising. The next two closest cities (Tucson and Sierra-Vista) each supplied roughly a thousand job postings.

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, security analysts earned an average hourly wage of $45.17 and an average yearly compensation of $93,960 in May 2018. These are comparable to or somewhat higher than national pay rate averages. The cost of living in Arizona is slightly higher than the national average, owing to higher housing expenditures.

The following job titles are at the top of the list of cybersecurity job titles in Arizona:

  • Cybersecurity Engineer
  • Cybersecurity Analyst
  • Cybersecurity Administrator/Manager
  • Software Developer/Engineer
  • Cybersecurity Consultant
  • Penetration Tester/Vulnerability Analyst
  • Systems Engineer
  • Network Engineer/Architect
  • Incident Analyst/Responder

Cybersecurity in Arizona

Arizona isn’t recognised for its economic power, yet it has been growing at a rate substantially above the national average for several years. In addition, the state government has recently focused on the cybersecurity industry. It seeks to educate the local community and organisations about information security through its Advanced Cybersecurity Team. It also intends to attract the finest and brightest cybersecurity professionals and businesses to the state, as well as encourage higher education institutions to offer top-tier cybersecurity degrees.

Arizona will become a cybersecurity leader if the state’s effort succeeds. Even now, there are plenty of cybersecurity employment openings, and the need will undoubtedly increase fast in the future years. And, particularly from governmental institutions, education possibilities are beginning to look appealing.

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