College Degrees Now Available for Secure Software Development

Tracie Berardi, Program Manager, Consortium for IT Software Quality (CISQ)

 

Cybersecurity training and workforce development is a common theme and solution that’s proposed at conferences that discuss the challenges of cybersecurity and the future as we know it – developing, architecting and living within digital IT ecosystems. Who’s steering the ship? Do leaders understand the security threats and do their teams know how to develop secure, resilient and trustworthy systems for the future? For years, IT was siloed and focused predominantly on functionality. Web-based applications and services expanded the attack surface.

 

Amidst these fast-paced technological changes, there is good news for workforce development, because with a skills gap, comes opportunity.

 

The Software Engineering Institute (SEI) at Carnegie Mellon University is one of the premiere universities in the U.S. for software engineering.  The SEI has developed Software Assurance Curricula with support from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.  The courses available include –

 

  • Master of Software Assurance Curriculum
  • Undergraduate Software Assurance Curriculum
  • Community College Software Assurance Curriculum
  • Software Assurance for Executives

https://www.sei.cmu.edu/education-outreach/curricula/software-assurance/index.cfm.

 

I spoke with Girish Seshagiri, EVP and CTO of ISHPI Information Technologies, who explained that in the United States we now have three community colleges that offer an Associate Degree in Secure Software Development based on the SEI curriculum and adoption guidelines.

 

Girish is passionate about this subject. He is on CISQ’s Board, co-chair of the National Initiative for Cybersecurity (NICE) apprenticeship sub-working group, and co-founder of the Community Initiative Center of Excellence for Secure Software (CICESS). CICESS promotes a dual model apprenticeship in partnership with community colleges. Girish’s employer, ISHPI, was an early adopter of the apprenticeship model at the ISHPI AIS Software Development Division in Peoria, IL. Students take college courses while participating in paid, on-the-job experience.

 

The CICESS GP project won the 2018 Innovations in Cybersecurity Education Award (curriculum category) by the National CyberWatch Center, a National Science Foundation-funded Advanced Technological Education Center at Prince George’s Community College in Largo, Maryland.

 

Here’s a recent article in Community College Daily: http://www.ccdaily.com/2018/08/ready-work-cyber-security-employees/