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DSU announces a doctoral degree in cyber security

November 17, 2014

Earlier this year, Dakota State University was approved by the SD Board of Regents to offer a doctoral degree in cyber security. The Doctor of Science in Cyber Security will be available starting Spring 2015 semester and will be firmly grounded in computer science and emphasize applied research in cyber security. The degree will produce highly qualified graduates with a commanding knowledge of cyber security to support federal, state and local government agencies, along with the private sector, by providing highly skilled professionals to conduct cutting-edge research and work.

The D.Sc. in Cyber Security will capitalize on DSU’s strengths in computer technology degree programs, which include computer science, information systems, cyber operations, and network and security administration. DSU graduates the largest number of baccalaureate students in computer-related degrees in South Dakota. These graduates often transition into the established computer-related master’s programs at DSU, and will now provide a rich source of qualified applicants for the new doctoral program.

The doctoral cyber security graduates will be hired by three distinct groups, including private industry, state and local government agencies, and institutions of higher education. Graduates will be prepared to focus on technologies and techniques related to specialized cyber operations activities, including data collection, software exploitation, analysis of malicious code, and reverse engineering.

There are nearly 25,000 unfilled cyber security positions within the federal government alone, not to mention the unfilled positions within the private sector. In addition, the national shortage of faculty with expertise in technical cyber security continues to grow at the same rate as the shortage of cyber security professionals in federal agencies. The new D.Sc. in Cyber Security will help address that issue at the root by not only training highly qualified professionals to fill those positions, but also train cyber security faculty who can have an exponential impact in providing a qualified work force.

Given the fact that DSU has strong working relationships with many organizations and agencies, the career opportunities for the D.Sc. Cyber Security graduates are vast. Dakota State has developed robust partnerships with both governmental and private organizations including the National Security Agency, Central Intelligence Agency, Navy SPAWAR, Department of Homeland Security, Johns Hopkins University’s Applied Physics Lab, Army INSCOM, Carnegie Mellon’s Software Engineering Institute and MIT’s Lincoln Labs.