Western Nevada College (WNC) has joined forces with the International Council of E-Commerce Consultants (EC-Council) to strengthen the cybersecurity community in Northern Nevada by implementing the EC-Council | Academia series. EC-Council’s Academic channel supports the most prestigious colleges and universities throughout the US and around the world with the most robust cybersecurity programs and offerings. More corporations, individuals, and governments are experiencing cyber-attacks worldwide, boosting high salary career opportunities and demand for skilled professionals. This prompted the college to integrate EC-Council’s certification courses, including: Certified Network Defender (CND), Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), and Computer Hacking Forensics Investigator (CHFI) into their program. The WNC Cybersecurity degree track now incorporates industry-recognized, stackable credentials, preparing students for both degree completion and to join the workforce post-graduation. EC-Council’s job-focused certifications are known as the most challenging in the industry and they map to the widely recognized National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) framework.
“We are very excited to partner with Western Nevada College and play a role in strengthening the cybersecurity community in Northern Nevada. Combating the growing cybersecurity threat landscape often starts with higher education communities developing skilled professionals who are ready to make an impact and start their careers. We are confident our partnership with Western Nevada College will highly impact the local community in Northern Nevada” said Wesley Alvarez, Director of Academics, U.S.
Anthem, Equifax, Home Depot, and Target are just some of the corporations violated by hackers in recent years, receiving negative press while compromising consumers’ social security, driver’s license, and credit card numbers, as well as other personal information such as birthdates and addresses. Now more than ever there is a need for businesses to protect their customers. That protection comes from information and technology professionals trained in hands-on, tactical cybersecurity. WNC will be able to fill that need in Northern Nevada with plans to launch a robust cybersecurity program using the EC-Council | Academia series.
“As we become more technologically bound, securing and defending the critical infrastructure of IT becomes of primary significance,” said Dave Riske, a Computer Information Technology/CISCO Technology/IS instructor at WNC. “Western Nevada College IT Advisory Board members have identified the need for instilling a security mindset in technical employees. Board members have expressed concerns from businesses throughout Nevada.”
Through this partnership, Western Nevada College will become the first college in Northern Nevada to offer tactical cybersecurity training and education, helping bridge the wide skill-gap in the area and give their students an added advantage over others in the region. “The goal of this project is to prepare IT professionals for applied security positions able to effect change in their networked computer environment and services,” Riske said. “Current training opportunities in the Northern Nevada area for these skills rely on ‘boot camp’-style training seminars provided by commercial organizations. These training camps are often far more expensive than a college course and focus primarily on certification and less on acquisition of skills and knowledge. By offering an industry-sanctioned curriculum leading to industry certifications recognized by the National Security Agency and the Department of Defense, as well as meeting the Committee on National Security Systems training standards, WNC will be providing a vital training opportunity to today’s IT workforce. This makes EC-Council an ideal partner, providing reputation, longevity, currency and relevance in the Cybersecurity/Information Assurance field,” Riske says.
Students who complete this proposed program will be prepared to work in the industry as computer user support specialists, computer network support specialists, forensics analysts, security analysts, network defenders, computer repairers, and many more positions, all priority STEM occupations.
Currently, WNC offers Information Technology training leading to IT industry certification opportunities with Cisco, Microsoft, TestOut, Linux Professional Institute, and the Project Management Institute, many of which are on the Nevada Eligible Industry Credentialing List as provided by Office of Workforce Innovation for a New Nevada. These certification opportunities prepare students to demonstrate competence in numerous technical areas. These existing courses and certification programs will provide the foundational background to ensure students are prepared for advanced certifications in cybersecurity and information assurance. Individuals interested in studying cybersecurity at WNC may contact Riske at [email protected].
Western Nevada College is a comprehensive community college that serves more than 5,000 students each year within a five-county area, spanning more than 10,000 square miles. Since 1971, Western Nevada College has helped students embark on the road to success by preparing them for a variety of careers through associate and bachelor degrees, industry certifications and workforce training. WNC offers exemplary academics, small classes, affordability and student satisfaction. Many Western grads become leaders in their communities and excel in their professions. With campuses in Carson City, Minden, and Fallon, and multiple online degrees and classes, Western is able to meet many students’ needs, whether they are residing in remote parts of Nevada or trying to fit in their education while balancing their commitments to work and family. For more information visit https://www.wnc.edu/.
EC-Council has been the world’s leading information security certification body since 2002. EC-Council is a member-based organization that certifies individuals with various information security and e-business skills. It is the owner and creator of the world famous Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), Computer Hacking Forensics Investigator (CHFI), EC-Council Certified Security Analyst (ECSA), and Licensed Penetration Tester (LPT) programs, and as well as many others programs. EC-Council Foundation, the nonprofit branch of EC-Council, created Global CyberLympics, the world’s first global hacking competition. For more information, https://www.eccouncil.org/academia.