The Florida Department of Education and Florida Center for Cybersecurity award will increase the number of trained professionals ready to fill critical cybersecurity positions in Miami
Miami, August 25, 2022 – Miami Dade College (MDC) was awarded $2 million from the Florida Department of Education (FLDOE) and the Florida Center for Cyber Security to inspire and prepare more students to pursue careers in cybersecurity. MDC was the first recipient of a group of 24 institutions that received funding under this initiative.
“We are very grateful for this investment in MDC from the Florida Department of Education and the Florida Center for Cybersecurity to continue to expand opportunities in this critical and growing field,” said MDC President Madeline Pumariega. “MDC offers one of the nation’s best cybersecurity programs and real-world experience in its real-world cyberfire lineup. We couldn’t do this without amazing partners.
The College will use the funds to increase the local workforce of cybersecurity talent over the next year and will focus on the following key objectives:
- To provide affordable, accessible and flexible training options for traditional and non-traditional students with access to scholarships for students enrolled in the Associate in Science in Cybersecurity and a stipend for local residents undergoing refresher training at the Cybersecurity Center of the MDC.
- Create meaningful high school-to-college and college-to-work pathways by providing a cybersecurity exploration event for middle and high school students and facilitating paid internships at local companies for graduate cybersecurity students in MDC.
- Support Miami’s transformation into a tech hub by organizing and hosting relevant Miami cybersecurity conferences and competitions.
The award is part of a $15.6 million initiative to expand cybersecurity and computer training in Florida as part of Governor Ron DeSantis’ goal to make Florida the best state in the nation at workforce training by 2030. The 24 projects funded under the initiative are expected to train 27,000 Florida students over the next year.
“We will continue to invest to ensure that high schools and colleges in Florida offer programs that allow students to enter the workforce immediately with the opportunity to obtain well-paying jobs,” Governor Ron said. DeSantis. “This funding will not only advance educational opportunities for Florida students seeking employment in this critical field, but will also create a safer and more stable cyberspace for our future generations.”
Cybersecurity is one of the fastest growing and most lucrative fields in the country. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, it is expected to grow by 33% over the next decade, which is “much faster than average.” With a six-figure median salary, students can land well-paying jobs right out of high school.
“In Florida, Governor DeSantis has prioritized cybersecurity, providing resources to our institutions to meet the demand for cybersecurity professionals,” Education Commissioner Manny Diaz said. “Building awareness and interest in cybersecurity at the K-12 and post-secondary levels is crucial to meeting the needs of Florida businesses and creating pathways for students to find employment with sustainable wages right after high school.
This initiative builds on the state’s CTE audit and implementation of HB 1507 to modify K-12 and post-secondary course offerings to phase out low-demand, low-wage courses and introduce more high-demand, high-paying, stackable courses. the degrees and pathways that best align Florida’s K-12 and post-secondary systems with workforce demands.
For more information on the award and scholarships available for students interested in cybersecurity, visit: https://www.mdc.edu/entec/grants/cyberpathways.aspx.