QUINCY (WGEM) – More trained experts could soon be on hand to help protect your most personal data.
John Wood Community College is set to receive a $15,000 grant, which officials say will go toward extending a course on meeting the networking needs of manufactures, and develop cybersecurity courses.
Interim Dean of Career and Technical Education David Hetzler said they do mention cybersecurity in their current computer science classes, but they don’t have a dedicated curriculum
He said the grant opens opportunities to teach students critical skills that they can take with them when they receive their licenses.
“We have been getting calls from different businesses to our business and industry partner about what options we have, what kind of courses we have available.” Hetzler said. “We’ve been communicating to them that we are working on something now. And we should be able to roll some things out pretty quickly to help address the immediate need.”
He said they are still developing the curriculum for the class, but it will cover topics such as firewalls, intrusion, detection, and prevention.
They are hoping to have some of the courses offered in spring of 2023, and the rest offered in the fall of 2023.
Officials say it’s a critical skill to have especially right now.
Andrew Roewe, Information Security Engineer at Adams Fiber, said the demand for cybersecurity is always there for people and it’s a constantly changing field.
He said institutions and people need to focus on preventing attacks from happening rather than just reacting to data breaches.
“Right now, a lot of companies seem to be reactive more than proactive. So they don’t look for a security person until they already got hit. Then they realize ‘oh we shoulda had someone with this knowledge to help us out’,” Roewe said.
He says its important for workers to recognize signs that they could have a cybersecurity breach on their hands and having people trained professionals to recognize the signs is part of a strong defense.
JWCC officials said the board has to accept the grant and they plan to have a meeting in 2 to 3 weeks to do so, then they’ll get the money.
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