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NGU announces New Cybersecurity Degree Program

Tigerville, SC (July 15, 2020) North Greenville University (NGU) announces it will begin offering a bachelor’s degree program in cybersecurity.  Students can study in a traditional in-person format or enjoy the flexibility of going 100% online starting Fall 2021, pending approval from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). Students that study and graduate from the program will have an opportunity to give Christ-centered leadership in one of the highest demand, fastest-growing, top-pay labor sectors in America. 

Today, cyber-attacks can affect anyone, but some of them are designed to leave global damage. A cyber-attack is an internet attack intended by individuals or entire organizations that targets computer information systems, networks, or infrastructures. When they appear, they come from a seemingly anonymous source that will attempt to destroy its victim through hacking into its system.  

There have been many, many worldwide cyber-attacks, and some are happening right now. The latest statistics say that security breaches have increased by 11% since 2018 and 67% since 2014.   

Cyber-attack maps are valuable tools that give information on how to stay ahead of attacks. Even though we're talking about enormous amounts of damage that cyber criminals cause, the maps themselves can be fascinating to watch.   

"Every 39 seconds, a cyber-attack occurs. While some of these are manually targeted cyber-attacks, some are also botnets intent on shutting down infrastructure and destroying computers and information systems of major organizations," said Cybersecurity Program Director and Assistant Professor of Cybersecurity and Computer Science Brad Hamlett.  

Hamlett has been named director of the new program. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Furman University and a Master of Science in Cybersecurity from the University of Maryland.  Before teaching at NGU, Hamlett worked as a senior intelligence analyst and senior information technology specialist for the U.S. Army and U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. He has worked highly sensitive intelligence operations and large IT projects for the nation, managing a $34 million portfolio of IT projects. He holds numerous industry certifications in information technology and project management. Hamlett is passionate about sharing how the gospel has transformed his life and how Christianity offers the best social framework for human flourishing. 

Hamlett says NGU's Cybersecurity coursework is designed to map to industry standards. Students in the program will learn to protect the confidentiality, availability, and integrity of information and information systems that support modern organizations. 

"The curriculum will focus on both the fundamentals of information systems as well as advanced topics in areas such as network security, cryptography, risk management, security governance, business continuity, security architecture, physical security, and critical infrastructures," he said.    

A key feature of NGU's cybersecurity program is equipping students to take and pass many industry certification exams, which certifies an individual's knowledge in the information security profession, including Network+, Linux+, Security+, and others to obtain these globally recognized credentials.

"Demand for certified security professionals is expected to rise as global commerce, and modern society becomes increasingly dependent on information systems and related technologies," said Hamlett. "The NGU cybersecurity major will develop students to be leaders in the growing cybersecurity field and employed by prominent organizations worldwide."  

The leading edge program will appeal to students passionate about justice, value proposition, top pay, excellent career opportunities, and can be used in a variety of forms of law enforcement.   

“I am very excited to be offering our new Cybersecurity degree to NGU students. Graduates with this degree will be able to enter some of the most vital and significant careers available for the next 30 years. Like all fields, cybersecurity needs leaders trained in Christ-centered institutions, and I am happy to begin training just such leaders,” said Dean of the College of Humanities and Sciences Dr. H. Paul Thompson, Jr. “I am convinced that Professor Hamlett will provide excellent leadership and maintain high academic standards for the program. Young people will be blessed to study under him.”  

Topics of study will include application development, information technology infrastructure, information security principles, information security standards, risk management, and compliance, network security and cryptography, physical and operational security, penetration testing and ethical hacking, professional certification test preparation, and cybersecurity capstone.  

Some of the Cybersecurity positions available on the job market include Artificial Intelligence Security Analyst, Chief Information Security Officer (CISO), Counterespionage Analyst, Cyber Intelligence Specialist, Cybersecurity Attorney, Ethical Hacker, and Forensic Computer Analyst.  

The program is part of NGU's College of Humanities and Sciences. To learn more, visit www.ngu.edu/cybersecurity or contact Brad Hamlett at brad.hamlett@ngu.edu.  

* Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, on the Internet, at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/business-and-financial/home.htm (viewed online July 7, 2020). Cited projections may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions and do not guarantee actual job growth.


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