Malone’s Cybersecurity Debut

By R.D. Le Claire

Cybersecurity is one of the newest course majors at Malone University. Since cybersecurity serves as a secure way to prevent unauthorized access to sensitive online systems, a major focused on this field is timely and will work to prepare students enrolled in the program for a successful career. 

“Our new cybersecurity program provides unmatched opportunities for hands-on learning and is aligned with the standards for cybersecurity of the Association for Computing Machinery,” Malone University’s cybersecurity program webpage says. 

“We’re still building [the new major] up; we’ve only [offered] the introduction [to cybersecurity] course for two years, and we’re still developing some of these other courses,” Jim Glasgow, professor of computer science, said. 

“Some things [about the field of cybersecurity] will continue to change: what students learn in these courses makes it easy for them to learn and keep up to date,” Glasgow said.

Technology changes quickly and new information comes out daily, so equipping students to keep learning about their field is essential.

“Cybersecurity is expected to grow by more than 25% in the next 10 years and is one of the most in-demand career options in Ohio and throughout the country,” the Malone University cybersecurity program webpage says.

“In this program, you will develop the wisdom and practical skills needed to secure information technology (IT) systems and networks, develop secure software and manage information systems,” the Malone University cybersecurity program webpage says. 

“There’s a great need and a lot of career opportunities in the private sector [as well as] in the government,” Glasgow said. “Banks, insurance companies, hospitals and all the big companies have opportunities for cybersecurity.

“It’s a good major for the future because [cybersecurity is] in the news every day, something happens every day, someone hacks into somewhere every day,” Glasgow said. 

There is a continuing battle between malicious program development and cybersecurity. One side is working to create and implement harmful programs and actions, and the other is working hard to protect servers, databases and computer users. 

“Sophisticated hacks [have been] pulled off by Russia and China against a broad array of government and industrial targets in the United States,” a March 14, 2021, New York Times article titled “White House Weighs New Cybersecurity Approach After Failure to Detect Hacks” says. “The hacks were detected long after they had begun not by any government agency but by private computer security firms.”

“We need to learn more and have more people involved in government and industry,” Glasgow said.

“You’ll also be instilled with a distinctive ethical code of conduct that reflects the mission and values of Christian faith,” the Malone University cybersecurity program webpage says. 

The difference between ethical programmers and malicious programmers is personal morals. Malone has woven morals into its cybersecurity program so students not only learn the “how” of programming, but also the “why.”

Cybersecurity is an important part of our growing world. As we grow together and connect through the internet there will be more opportunities for people to take advantage of others. Cybersecurity needs to grow as fast as the malicious online forces. 

“It’s a technical major. If you enjoy programming that would be good, and there are a lot of opportunities after graduation first in employment in industry and government, and going into graduate school,” Glasgow said. 

A common criticism of colleges, in general, is that students pay a large sum of money to learn information that is financially useless. Cybersecurity as a study promises to be one with strong and stable career paths. 

“This year quite a few of the freshman in my [introductory] computer science course are cybersecurity majors,” Glasgow said. 

Cybersecurity is growing, both at Malone and in the world at large. A career in this field is not only profitable on a personal level but helps the continually growing number of people who rely on the internet for information storage and secure transactions and interactions. 

The cybersecurity major’s addition is, then, very much in line with Malone’s mission to prepare students to serve God, the world and the church in better ways.

For more information on the cybersecurity major, contact Jim Glasgow (jglasgow@malone.edu).

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