Winthrop University: About Cybersecurity
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Contact Information
Dept. of Computer Science & Quantitative Methods
315 Thurmond Building
Rock Hill, SC 29733, USA
803/323-4811
803/323-3960 (fax)

About Cybersecurity

Protecting valuable data and critical infrastructure assets has become a significant problem for companies and government agencies in South Carolina and throughout the U.S.  A significant problem for these employers is lack of personnel with cybersecurity training.

Winthrop University's Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity degree (CYBR) was approved by the SC Commission on Higher Education in 2021 and began its first class of students in Fall of 2021. This is the first stand-alone cybersecurity degree by a South Carolina state-run university. The program leverages coursework from Winthrop's successful Computer Science degree with a core of seven specialized cybersecurity courses. Graduates of the CYBR degree will have many career opportunities and should expect excellent salaries.

 

Career Opportunities

Graduates from the BS in Cybersecurity degree will be qualified for many careers, including
• security administrator
• information security engineer
• incident responder
• security auditor
• penetration tester
• vulnerability analyst

There is a shortage of information security talent in both industry and government. In, 2017 IT-oLogy in cooperation with the SC Coordinating Council on Workforce Development, and the SC Department of Commerce issued a report on the state of South Carolina's IT workforce challenges and opportunities. In it they discuss the major concerns related to the supply of workers for the field. In the cybersecurity field alone they point to a Forbes statistic of over 200,000 unfilled cybersecurity jobs nationwide and a Cisco statistic puts it at 1M globally. The output of this survey, which included 117 SC companies, identified several gaps, including the:
• a limited supply of candidates in IT,
• lack of enough students currently in training,
• lack of diversity, and
• the demand for cybersecurity accelerating at a rate three times the rate of other IT jobs.

These jobs are well paid. A 2019 workforce study by the SC Chamber of Commerce found an average salary of $97,760/year for Other Information Services within the Business & IT Services sector. It also showed a projected 10 year growth of 48.4%.

 

Curriculum

The core of the CYBR degree is seven Cybersecurity courses, including Cyber Forensics, Cloud Computing, Enterprise Security, and Ethical Hacking. Students complete several computer science courses such as Programming 1 and 2, Computer Architecture, Database Processing, and Networks. CYBR students also complete three math courses and the university's general education program. 

The curriculum is designed for students who begin as freshmen.  Potential transfer students should consult with the CSQM Department Chair or the CYBR program director.

Last Updated: 10/4/21