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NOVA awarded prestigious cybersecurity education designation

Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) has been designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance 2-Year Education (CAE2Y) by the National Security Agency and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

The designation means that NOVA has met rigorous NSA and DHS standards for cybersecurity education, including integrating security concepts into other academic programs and employing faculty that hold recognized industry certifications. In addition, it will allow for smoother articulation agreements between two- and four-year colleges that carry the designation.

There are only 33 CAE2Y institutions across the country. NOVA is the only one in Virginia.

The CAE2Y designation covers academic years 2013 through 2015. “Receiving this designation is testament to the strength of the cybersecurity program at NOVA,” said Dr. Margaret Leary, information technology professor at NOVA-Alexandria. “Students can rest assured that they are participating in an academically rigorous curriculum that will prepare them well for an in-demand occupation.”

The college has offered a cybersecurity career studies certificate since 2001 – one of the first community colleges in the nation to do so. Students can continue their education by earning an applied associate of science degree in information technology using the credits accumulated from the certificate.

Entry-level jobs in cybersecurity include positions as security operations center (SOC) technicians, digital forensic technicians, cybersecurity analysts, entry-level security assessors and penetration testers.

To help students gain experience, the college offers internship opportunities with a number of federal agencies and encourages students to take part in National CyberWatch Center competitions.

For more information about the CAE2Y designation or NOVA’s cybersecurity program, contact Dr. Margaret Leary at 703-845-6549 or mleary@nvcc.edu.

Media Contact: Jennifer Gonzalez | 703.425.5839 | jgonzalez@nvcc.edu

Northern Virginia Community College is the largest institution of higher education in the Commonwealth of Virginia and one of America's largest community colleges. NOVA enrolls more than 75,000 students at its six campuses in Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun, Manassas, Springfield and Woodbridge, and through the Extended Learning Institute. For more information about NOVA and its programs or services, call 703-323-3000 or visit the College's Web site, www.nvcc.edu.