The Homeland Security Department in the next few months will roll out a new website designed to highlight education, training and career opportunities in cybersecurity.
The new National Institute for Cybersecurity Studies is part of the National Initiative on Cybersecurity Education, or NICE, and will serve as a central clearinghouse for cybersecurity careers, Michael Koehler, a program analyst at the National Cybersecurity Division’s education office at Homeland Security, said Thursday during Govloop’s online Government Innovation Summit.
The new website, which is set to launch in December, will provide current and prospective cybersecurity professionals information on scholarships, internships, training, certifications, cybersecurity news and events, research and tips on how to start and progress through a career in the cybersecurity field, Koehler said. DHS eventually plans to add an interactive community to the website where participants can discuss cybersecurity topics and issues, he added.
“It’s an amazing resource to start or continue a career in cybersecurity field, and we hope [professionals] can make use of it,” Koehler said. “It’s going to be one of a kind and valuable to the nation.”
Ben Scribner, also a program analyst at NCSD, provided more details on the training programs already available to federal cybersecurity professionals. For example, DHS has partnered with the Defense and State departments to create the Federal Virtual Training Environment, which provides online, on-demand training to federal workers and some contractors and can be accessed from any Internet-enabled computer, he said. The virtual training also provides hands-on labs where participants can connect to a State Department server and apply the concepts learned in the course, such as configuring the firewall, Scribner added.
Another training program, the Federal Cybersecurity Training Event, is part of a partnership between DHS and State that includes virtual training programs that emphasize more networking and collaboration among students, Scribner said. This includes virtual worlds training where students create an avatar, take a course and then break out into teams to apply the concepts in a simulated environment, he said. Wired Workplace highlighted this program in February.