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NY Universities Part of $30 Million City Cyber Hub

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Multiple institutions of higher education will be playing a big role in Cyber NYC, a $30 million initiative launched by the New York City Economic Development Corp. to make New York a worldwide hub for cybersecurity innovation.

City University of New York (CUNY), Columbia University, New York University and Cornell Tech will be in charge of the education aspects of the project, by bringing academics and industry representatives together to woo students into the field. The work will include several elements:

  • CUNY and NYU's Tandon School of Engineering will create courses for delivery on edX, to serve as continuing education for professionals. These will be "stackable," enabling students to combine them for credit towards a certification or degree.
  • A tech-in-residence program will enlist cybersecurity professionals to work as adjuncts in existing courses, to teach lessons that emphasize essential job skills and real-life scenarios.
  • CUNY's LaGuardia Community College will work with software development school Fullstack Academy. The two-year college will offer a six-week preparatory course covering the basics of cybersecurity software and terminology for adults who have "limited exposure" to IT, to help them prepare to attend the boot camp led by Fullstack. The goal: to prepare and place more than a thousand students in jobs over three years.
  • Funding will also be made available by the Economic Development Council to help launch a graduate studies program in cybersecurity, to be housed at the Grove School of Engineering in CUNY's City College of New York. The master's degree will be a fifth-year extension of the school's existing bachelor of science in computer science. Eventually, it will evolve into a stand-alone year-long program. According to CUNY, Facebook, which already works with the School of Engineering, will be involved in the development of the new program.
  • The universities will also create a citywide "cybersecurity discipline council," a forum to bring academics and the private sector together to discuss issues and needs.

Other parts of the cybersecurity initiative include creation of a cybersecurity innovation center, Hub NYC, to help startups; a global cyber center for industry collaboration; and a technology transfer division to be overseen by Columbia. Cyber NYC is expected to spark creation of 10,000 "good-paying cybersecurity jobs" over the next decade. Currently, the city's cybersecurity industry has about 100 companies and 6,000 employees.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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