Cyber Security Degrees in Washington
Within the state of Washington, there are eight different institutions that have been accredited as one of the National Centers of Academic Excellence (CAE), and most of them are in the two-year education programs.
Here is a list of Washington cyber security degrees that are from NSA CAE Designated Institutions:
- City University of Seattle
- Columbia Basin College 2 Year Cyber Security Program
- Edmonds Community College 2 Year Cyber Security Program
- Green River College 2 Year Cyber Security Program
- Highline College 2 Year Cyber Security Program
- Spokane Falls Community College 2 Year Cyber Security Program
- University of Washington
- Whatcom Community College 2 Year Cyber Security Program
NSA CAE Designated Institutions for Cyber Security in Washington
The City University of Seattle and University of Washington have been designated within cyber defense, with UW also having cyber research. Various locations throughout Washington include Seattle, Spokane, Tacoma, Bellingham, Pasco, Lynnwood, Auburn, and Des Moines.
Both the National Security Agency (NSA) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have designated specific programs that meet the high standards set by these organizations in cyber defense, cyber operations, and cyber research.
Online Cyber Security Programs in Washington
At the City University of Seattle, students can pursue a Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity and Information Assurance. The program begins in each quarter and takes 180 total credit hours to complete. It is possible to complete the entire degree in as little as two years for full-time students.
The curriculum is split up into the following courses: preparation for the program, risk management and compliance, cyber security technology, 10 credits worth of electives, and a capstone project in bureaupathology. Graduates from the program have received jobs in data security, cybercrime, and corporate investigations.
Master's in Cyber Security Degrees in Washington
At the University of Washington in Bothell, the School of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics offers a Master of Science in Cybersecurity Engineering. Students can select between full-time and part-time education, and those that will continue working are able to meet in the evening at a twice-per-week rate.
There are three principles within the curriculum: protection, detection, and correction. This means that the coursework will focus on being able to defend a company network from cyber attacks, being able to determine intrusions when they occur, and fending them off with reactionary activity and building preventative measures.
Working in Cyber Security in Washington
The majority of education opportunity falls in undergraduate degrees and certifications in Washington, but there are handful of Master’s degrees that are from NSA-designated institutions – the City University of Seattle and the Bothell and Tacoma campuses of the University of Washington.
- Undergraduate Degrees:
Whatcom Community College offers a Bachelor of Applied Science in IT Networking with a concentration in Cybersecurity. In order to complete the program, students must maintain at least a C grade (2.0 GPA or higher) and will need to demonstrate responsibility in attendance and assignment completion. Some of the core courses students will take include various levels of Cloud Computing, Mobile and Wireless Technologies, and Web Development. These are also various certificates of proficiency toward those subjects. Between 15 to 60 credits will be reserved for general education courses and up to 45 credits will go toward electives chosen by the student and their advisor.
Another community college at Spokane Falls also has a few programs – an Associate of Applied Science in Information Technology with a Cybersecurity emphasis, and a Bachelor of Applied Science in Cybersecurity. The latter is offered in the evening, or there are online and hybrid options, the latter giving students the ability to learn both on-campus and at their convenience online. Some of the courses available are Ethical Hacking, Endpoint Security, Risk Management, Encryption, and Identity Management. This particular Bachelor’s degree is recommended for students that have already completed an associates degree or already have some related experience in information technology.
- Masters and Continuing Education:
The University of Washington’s Professional and Continuing Education platform has a certificate in Cybersecurity. This can be completed either online or at the downtown Seattle location, and it takes approximately eight to nine months. For those meeting on campus, class times are typically in the evening. This program is best suited for those that already have some work experience in information technology, specifically software developers, analysts, and network architects. Completing this curriculum will prepare students for the Systems Security Certified Practitioner (SSCP) and Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) exams.
In addition to the undergraduate program offered at the City University of Seattle, they also have a Master of Science in Information Security that can also be completed online and it requires 39 credits to fulfill. Similar to the Bachelor’s degree, students can be enrolled in any of the quarters. The curriculum is divided up into 15 credits worth of core courses and focused courses in cyber security environment and information security audit. The program culminates with a capstone project or a thesis depending on the student’s selection.
- Cyber Security Employment Options:
Seattle will be the biggest location for working potential at any type of professional level. There are numerous entry-level positions at tech and shopping giants Microsoft and Amazon, as well as Pacific Northwest, Deloitte, and Accenture. An associate IT auditor at Liberty Mutual Insurance will be reviewing information system applications and analyzing data for risk assessment, and will be working with others and recommending changes and improvements to various system processes. This job recommends the completion of a Bachelor’s degree and up to a year’s worth of internship or work experience.
Washington Cyber Security Careers
Among the western half of the United States, the only state that outdoes Washington in the tech industry is California. According to CompTIA, Washington is the sixth-fastest growing state in the nation for tech opportunities and around a good portion of jobs are based in cyber security and systems analysis. IT services is growing at a massive 4.8 percent year-over-year margin.
According to Salary.com, cyber security analysts make between $74,352 to $104,216, and that number can get over $115,000 for more experienced professionals, making it one of the more higher-paying states for cyber security positions.
Top Cyber Security and Tech Employers and Organizations
Amazon’s headquarters in Seattle provides numerous opportunities in cyber security. The risk analyst role recommends having a Bachelor’s degree in related field and at least three years of experience in information security. Skills needed include an ability to communicate well with others to complete projects and present information, be able to manage multiple projects at one time, and understand regulations and policies that need to be followed.
- 2 Year Cyber Security Program 2 Year Cyber Defense CAE-2Y
- Cyber Defense CAE-CD
- Cyber Defense CAE-R
- 2 Year Cyber Security Program 2 Year Cyber Defense CAE-2Y