infoTECH Feature

November 25, 2015

The University of Tampa Plans to Bridge the Cybersecurity Workforce Gap

The growing global IT security workforce shortage is no secret.  As detailed in  (ISC)²’s 2015 (ISC)2 Global Information Security Workforce Study—conducted by Frost & Sullivan and sponsored by  Booz Allen Hamilton (News - Alert), NRI Secure and Cyber 360—we are looking at a 1.5 million shortfall of trained and certified security professionals by 2019. A key means for closing this gap is the (ISC)² Global Academic Program (GAP) from our community host which recently welcomed The University of Tampa as a new program member.  

Through the agreement, (ISC)² will provide University of Tampa students the opportunity to gain the knowledge, skills, and industry certifications needed to enter the high-demand, high-paying cybersecurity workforce.  As (ISC)²  noted in announcing the agreement, “This collaborative initiative is an important part of the GAP’s aim to establish a joint framework for industry-academic cooperation to bridge the workforce gap between the increasing demand for qualified cybersecurity professionals and the amount of skilled professionals entering the industry.”  

The addition of The University of Tampa to GAP really does give those interested in an IT career a unique venue for becoming a skilled IT security professional.  The university offers an undergraduate major and minor in cybersecurity. The program, which is offered in the AACSB-accredited Sykes (News - Alert) College of Business, is built to provide hands-on experience in a modern, dedicated cybersecurity lab while preparing students for globally recognized professional certifications such as the SSCP and CISSP.

“Recognized as the global leader in gold standard information security certification and education, (ISC)² has developed and continually refined the (ISC)² common body of knowledge (CBK®) over the last 26 years to reflect the evolving threat landscape and accepted standards of practice for this burgeoning industry,” said  Dr. Jo Portillo, manager, Global Academic Program, (ISC)². “This agreement with The University of Tampa will allow us to advance our vision to inspire a safe and secure cyber world by incorporating our CBK directly into the global academic community.” 

“Cybersecurity students at the Sykes College receive a state-of-the-art cybersecurity education as well as a strong business background,” stated Frank Ghannadian, dean of the Sykes College of Business. “We are preparing our students to be leaders who know how to effectively secure information and enterprise-systems in today’s business environment.  Our new partnership with (ISC)² helps us to further this vision.” 

To learn more about The University of Tampa’s Cybersecurity program, please visit or contact Dr. Kenneth Knapp, director of UT’s cybersecurity programs, at [email protected].  

As recent events have underscored, the stakes for securing people, physical and virtual resources have never been higher.  And, in an increasingly cloud-centric world as the vectors of vulnerability expand and the amount of reliance organizations of all sizes and location grows exponentially, it is creating obviously a concurrent need for skilled security professionals, particularly in the cloud arena.  As the workforce report highlights, the acceleration of risk is not being matched by an acceleration of qualified people to manage the risks.  This is why the (ISC)² GAP initiatives are so very important. 

Edited by Kyle Piscioniere

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