How do you get started in an information security career? This is a question we get asked a lot.
There are several ways … but if you’re looking to take a more formal approach, attending a school accredited as a National Center of Academic Excellence (CAE) is a great place to start. Run by the NSA and DHS this program evaluates educational institutions and designates them as either Information Assurance Education (IAE) or Research (R) schools. The goal, as stated on the program’s page, is “promoting higher education and research in IA and producing a growing number of professionals with IA expertise in various disciplines.”
As of last year there were 123 schools with one or both of the CAE designations. This year the program just announced an additional 22 schools according to GovInfoSecurity.com. Of those four of them are in the metro DC area.
- Bowie State University (MD)
- College of Southern Maryland (MD)
- Community College of Baltimore County (MD)
- Wilmington University (DE)
And in case you missed our local schools from their previous list, here they are for your convenience…
- Anne Arundel Community College (MD)
- Capitol College (MD)
- Johns Hopkins University (MD)
- Prince George’s Community College (MD)
- Towson University (MD)
- United States Naval Academy (MD)
- University of Maryland, Baltimore County (MD)
- University of Maryland, College Park (MD)
- University of Maryland University College (MD)
- George Mason University (VA)
- Howard University (DC)
- The George Washington University (DC)
- Georgetown University (DC)
- Information Resources Management College (DC)
In 1998, the National Security Agency, through the National INFOSEC Education and Training Program, established Centers of Academic Excellence (CAE) to identify universities that conform to its standard for acceptable programs in information assurance (IA).
Now, over 13 years later, both the NSA and the Department of Homeland Security jointly sponsor the National Centers of Academic Excellence in IA Education and CAE-Research programs. The goal: to reduce vulnerabilities in the nation’s critical information infrastructure by promoting higher education in information assurance and producing a greater number of professionals with hands-on information assurance expertise.
“We’ve expanded significantly,” says Dickie George, information assurance technical director at NSA. “The CAE programs have really fostered a spirit of community among the various schools.”
From seven CAE universities in 1999, the program today identifies 118 universities and 13 two-year schools as centers of excellence (CAE). In addition, 50 universities gain recognition as centers of excellence in research (36 of which are designated as both CAE/IAE and CAE-R) within information assurance.
This year, 22 new schools have received designations: 12 universities and seven two-year colleges have obtained the CAE designation, while three universities now specialize in the CAE-R category.
Today’s post image is from National Defense University.