Armstrong Prepares Students for Cutting-Edge Cyber Security Jobs

Matthew Fogarty decided to pursue a Cyber Affairs and Security Certificate at Armstrong because he was interested in learning about the cyber side of law enforcement.

“I am pursuing a career in federal law enforcement,” he explained. “With cyber crime becoming more prevalent, I thought this would help me understand different criminals and their intentions.”

For Adam Strzemienski, an investigator with the North Georgia College and State University police department in Dahlonega, Ga., the certificate offered the opportunity to take online classes to fight cyber crime on campus even more effectively.

“I've noticed that pretty much every crime involves a computer in some fashion these days,” he said. “The current trend is going towards cyber crime, so it only makes sense to stay on top of the latest developments in the field.”

Dr. Zaphon Wilson, head of Armstrong's Criminal Justice, Social and Political Science department, explains that the Cyber Affairs and Security Certificate program has become increasingly appealing to students like Matt and Adam, due to the changing post-9/11 world. “Cyber security is a hot issue because we are living in a computer age,” he explained. “The technology is fluid and constantly changing.”

The Cyber Affairs and Security Certificate is an online, nine credit hour program that offers master's degree level credit in the criminal justice field. Credit for courses taken for the certificate may also be applied to the Master of Science in Criminal Justice degree at Armstrong.

The program, which officially launched in 2006, appeals to a wide range of students. The certificate prepares students for federal, state, and local government positions, as well as jobs in private business and international organizations. “We give people who work in law enforcement, as well as our students, the opportunity to take state-of the-art courses taught by experts in the field,” said Dr. Wilson. “The courses give a sense of how cyber security operates and how criminals use computers for illegal purposes.”

This interdisciplinary program provides the tools and methodologies for advanced study in cyber security, computer forensics and Internet-related investigations. Cyber security classes teach students about information security, risk assessment, threat analysis, security implementation, disaster recovery planning, cyber security countermeasures and data encryption.

“We prepare students to work in this exciting field,” said Dr. Wilson, “and help them learn more about the world we live in today.”