North Carolina’s cybersecurity educational and career opportunities are included in this guide. The following details the cybersecurity degree programmes available in North Carolina, as well as some of the economic factors behind the cybersecurity industry’s growth in the state.
Over the past few decades, North Carolina’s economy has undergone a major redistribution. Three of the state’s primary foundations, which were developed earlier in the twentieth century, have all experienced significant contraction. Furniture and textile manufacturing, as well as tobacco farms, were once the most important employers in North Carolina, particularly in rural areas.
Fortunately, new contributors, mainly financial intermediaries, biotechnology, information technology, healthcare, and science, have been able to replace these industries.
The majority of this expansion has occurred in the state’s major cities. However, this is excellent news for cybersecurity practitioners, since these sectors are major employers of information security professionals. Bank of America is one of the most well-known employers in North Carolina, but it is far from the only one. Other examples include Lowe’s, US Trust, Family Dollar, and Tyson Foods.
Growing importance of cybersecurity in North Carolina
North Carolina’s state government has been a vocal supporter of the cybersecurity sector and the job opportunities it offers. It has been a sponsor of the Girls Go CyberStart initiative, which aims to interest and engage young girls in cybersecurity technology.
The Enterprise Security & Risk Management office of the Department of Information Technology keeps the community informed about emerging information security threats and mitigation strategies. The Secretary of State has launched a Cybersecurity Initiative to help state-registered investment advisors and their clients protect their personal details.
North Carolina teamed up with Cisco and other leading cybersecurity companies in 2018 to offer cybersecurity training to veterans in the state. The initiative, known as CyberVetsUSA, provides free training and job opportunities to veterans, transitioning service members, National Guard and reservists, and their spouses.
The North Carolina Center for Cybersecurity (NCCYBER) was founded as a non-profit organisation to facilitate communications between industry, academic institutions, and the state government in 2018.
North Carolina’s cybersecurity future appears promising, with government funding and essential consumers of cybersecurity services in place and increasing rapidly.
Cybersecurity education in North Carolina
North Carolina is home to some of the country’s best higher education institutions, especially in medical and technical research. Wake Forest, Duke, North Carolina State, and the University of North Carolina have all had a hand in the burgeoning research industry in the state.
It’s odd, though, that North Carolina’s colleges and universities haven’t been more enthusiastic about taking up the cybersecurity mantle. The state government has expressed its support, and the economy has become increasingly dependent on technology, especially information technology. Only the University of North Carolina (UNC) has invested significant capital in improving cybersecurity education programmes among the larger name colleges.
Fortunately, UNC is putting in a lot of effort. The Department of Software and Information Systems is in charge of the university’s cybersecurity initiatives. The CyberDNA Research Center was founded to conduct cutting-edge research into information security technologies and techniques. On the Charlotte campus, the school has also developed its own Cybersecurity Boot Camp, which aims to prepare students for a career in cybersecurity in as little as 24 months.
As a result, UNC, in conjunction with other smaller campuses, is offering good opportunities for would-be cybersecurity students to pursue their career goals.
All companies are under pressure to maintain full data protection at all times, and keeping up with rapidly changing technology is crucial. As a result, seasoned cybersecurity experts are prioritised. However, due to a shortage of staff relative to demand, employers will continue to seek out entry-level information security specialists in order to sustain sufficient cyber defenses.
Many employers, particularly larger businesses, are willing to accept candidates with associate’s degrees for these entry-level positions. Associate’s degree programmes usually last between a year and two years to complete. When time and resources allow, professionals with this background and some real-world experience in cybersecurity can return to school and obtain a bachelor’s degree or higher. In addition, associate’s degree courses are often accepted as credit for bachelor’s degree programmes, making completion simpler and less costly.
Campus-based associate’s degrees in North Carolina
On North Carolina community college campuses, seven different cybersecurity associate’s degree programmes are currently available. Information and links are given below.
Cyberecurity Associate’s Programs in North Carolina
|Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College||Asheville||Information Systems Security A.A.S.|
|Craven Community College||New Bern||Associate in Applied Science- CTI-Cybersecurity|
|Forsyth Technical Community College||Winston Salem||Associate in Applied Science in Criminal Justice Technology/Forensic Science|
|Forsyth Technical Community College||Winston Salem||Associate in Applied Science in IT – Systems Security|
|Rowan-Cabarrus Community College||Salisbury||Associate in Applied Science in Cyber Security|
|Wake Technical Community College||Raleigh||Cybersecurity – AAS Degree|
Online associate’s degrees in North Carolina
At this time, there are only two online cybersecurity associate’s degrees available in North Carolina. A curriculum leading to an AAS in Information Technology – Network Management is offered by Beaufort County Community College. On its Winston-Salem campus, Forsyth Technical Community College offers an Associate in Applied Science – IT Cybersecurity programme.
Since cybersecurity has become such a vital field, most industry positions require at least a bachelor’s degree in a computer-related or STEM field. A professional’s resume would be at the top of the pile for job opportunities if they have an undergraduate degree in cybersecurity. Interestingly, bachelor’s degree programmes are currently unavailable in North Carolina, although this is expected to change in the near future.
Campus-based bachelor’s degrees in North Carolina
Only one university currently offers cybersecurity bachelor’s degree programmes on campus. As previously said, the University of North Carolina is at the forefront. The University of North Carolina at Charlotte offers a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science with a Cybersecurity Focus. UNC – Wilmington also provides a Cybersecurity Minor to all UNCW undergraduate students, regardless of major.
Online bachelor’s degrees in North Carolina
North Carolina schools only deliver one online bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity. A Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity is offered at Montreat College.
In recent years, cybersecurity master’s degrees have become much more relevant, as evidenced by the growing number of educational options accessible. Senior-level and management-level corporate jobs are increasingly requiring candidates to have a graduate degree. The demand for C-suite corporate positions such as Chief Information Security Officer is a major factor. However, cybersecurity veterans who prefer academia, cybersecurity science, or cybersecurity consulting find master’s degrees to be a valuable addition to their resume.
Campus-based master’s degrees in North Carolina
As seen in the table below, North Carolina currently offers five campus-based cybersecurity master’s degree options from three separate colleges. There are no online master’s programmes available right now.
Cyberecurity Master’s Programs in North Carolina
|North Carolina A&T State University||Greensboro||Master of Science in Computer Science – Cyber Security|
|North Carolina A&T State University||Greensboro||Master of Science in Computer Science – Secure Software Engineering|
|North Carolina State University at Raleigh||Raleigh||Master of Computer Science – Security Track|
|University of North Carolina at Charlotte||Charlotte||Master of Science Degree in Information Technology – Information Security and Privacy|
|University of North Carolina Wilmington||Wilmington||Master of Science in Computer Science & Information Systems – Information Security|
In recent years, doctorate degrees in cybersecurity have become more widely available. Professionals with academic or study backgrounds are the main source of demand for these PhDs. PhDs are being sought by several cybersecurity veterans holding c-suite roles in the corporate world.
Campus-based Ph.D.’s in North Carolina
The University of North Carolina has taken over as the sole provider of cybersecurity Ph.D. programmes. The University of North Carolina at Charlotte offers a Ph.D. in Computing and Information Systems with a variety of academic emphasis specialties, including cybersecurity.
Certification programmes are useful to both newcomers and seasoned practitioners in the field of cybersecurity. There are a variety of certification programmes available, each tailored to a specific audience.
Certain types of certifications include an introduction to the technologies and methods used, which may help beginners determine if cybersecurity is right for them. Completing such certifications would almost certainly give job seekers an edge in entry-level positions.
Some cybersecurity certifications are intended to help seasoned practitioners advance their studies in a specific specialty, such as penetration testing. These advanced information security certifications will help you improve your resume and advance your career.
Other cybersecurity certifications, on the other hand, are intended to serve as stand-ins for advanced degrees, particularly master’s degrees.
Campus-based cybersecurity certifications in North Carolina
North Carolina universities currently deliver eight campus-based credential programmes. More details can be found in the table below.
Cyberecurity Certification Programs in North Carolina
|Beaufort County Community College||Washington||Cybersecurity Certificate|
|Central Carolina Community College||Sanford||Network Security Certificate|
|Craven Community College||New Bern||Cybersecurity Administration Certificate|
|Fayetteville Technical Community College||Fayetteville||Systems Security and Analysis / Cyber Security Operations Certificate|
|Gaston College||Dallas||Information Technology – Networking and Cyber Defense Advanced Certificate|
|Queens University of Charlotte||Charlotte||Forensic Computing Certificate|
|Rowan-Cabarrus Community College||Salisbury||Cyber Investigations Certificate|
|University of North Carolina at Charlotte||Charlotte||Graduate Certificate in Information Security and Privacy|
Online cybersecurity certifications in North Carolina
Online access is also available for four credential programmes. Forsyth Technical Community College offers three of these alternatives. The following are some of them:
Cyberecurity Online Certification Programs in North Carolina
|Craven Community College||New Bern||CTI-Cybersecurity Diploma|
|Forsyth Technical Community College||Winston Salem||Certificate in IT- Systems Security|
|Forsyth Technical Community College||Winston Salem||Certificate in IT-Cyber Security|
|Forsyth Technical Community College||Winston Salem||Certificate in IT-Systems Security Cyber Defense|
Cybersecurity Jobs in Carolina
North Carolina’s cybersecurity industry is expanding rapidly, and the supply of trained professionals is not keeping up. According to Cyberseek, 34,739 people were working in any field of cybersecurity in the 12 months leading up to September 2019. During the same time span, state employers advertised 19,657 new information security work openings. The vast majority of these job vacancies are in North Carolina’s three largest cities. Employers in Charlotte posted 8,418 new cybersecurity job openings, Raleigh had 5,626 new job openings, and Durham had 2,342 new job openings.
The state of North Carolina is taking steps to expand the labour pool, especially by attempting to tap into the state’s large veteran population. Nonetheless, since the state’s economy is centred on financial intermediaries, demand for new talent will continue to rise as cybersecurity becomes a more pressing problem.
Security analysts were paying a little more than the national average salary in May 2018. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average hourly wage was $50.20 and the average annual income was $104,430. North Carolina’s standard of living, on the other hand, was well below the national average. The main explanation for the lower cost of living in North Carolina is the relatively low cost of housing. However, keep in mind that these are statewide numbers. Housing would, of course, be more costly in areas surrounding major cities, as this is where the majority of cybersecurity jobs are located. Even so, the most expensive place, Charlotte, has a lower cost of living than the national average.
H2 Cybersecurity in North Carolina
The economic transformation in North Carolina over the last few decades has occurred at a time when data stores are becoming increasingly vulnerable. Finance, healthcare, information technology, and science, which are now leading the way in North Carolina, are common targets for hackers and thus heavy users of cybersecurity services.
The state government is also assisting veterans and young women who want to pursue careers in cybersecurity. It’s also setting the standard for public education about vulnerability and how to avoid being hacked, as well as for its own data protection.
According to recent employment figures, cybersecurity jobs are increasingly expanding. Unfortunately, work demand is outpacing the supply of trained cybersecurity professionals. This is generating a seller’s market in North Carolina, with professionals with the expertise to fill vital cybersecurity positions far outnumbering those without.