Dec 05 2018

North Carolina to Offer Free Cybersecurity Training to Veterans

The partnership with CyberVetsUSA will offer more than a dozen cybersecurity certification courses.

Veterans in North Carolina looking to transition to careers in cybersecurity will now have a leg up thanks to a training partnership between the state government and a nonprofit backed by Cisco Systems called CyberVetsUSA.

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper announced the partnership in mid-November. The effort is part of a broader campaign to fill cybersecurity jobs. Of the 300,000 cybersecurity positions open in the U.S., about 13,000 are in the public sector, according to CyberSeek, a National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education online tool that collects employment data. 

To connect veterans with cybersecurity jobs, Cisco Systems will work with industry partners, the North Carolina Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, the North Carolina Department of Information Technology, the North Carolina Department of Commerce, and post-secondary institutions and veteran services organizations throughout the state to bring the CyberVetsUSA program to North Carolina.

“North Carolina is the most military friendly state in the nation and we’re proud that so many of our veterans choose to stay here when they return to civilian life,” Cooper said in a statement. “Veterans play a crucial role in powering our economy and we must make sure they have the skills they need to thrive in the workforce. The cybersecurity field is vital to the 21st century economy and I’m pleased that Cisco recognizes that North Carolina’s talented veterans are the perfect fit for these important jobs.”

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North Carolina Vets Will Get Access to Numerous Cyber Courses

CyberVetsUSA is a free cybersecurity training program for eligible veterans, service members transitioning to civilian life, military spouses and members of the Reserves and National Guard who are interested in pursuing a cybersecurity career. The self-paced training program takes 12 to 14 weeks, according to a North Carolina website on the program, and will be primarily online. 

Cisco is partnering with other industry leaders to provide the training content, including Amazon Web Services, (ISC)², Palo Alto Networks, Fortinet, NetApp, and National Development Group.

According to the statement form Cooper’s office, program participants can choose from over a dozen courses to earn certifications in cybersecurity operations, secure infrastructure, software engineering, operations and technical support, security management and network security

Additionally, they will have access to mentoring and career resources as well as direct links to employment opportunities. The industry partners are providing career resources and connections to job opportunities for those who complete the training and certification. 

Eligible participants who are looking to gain cyber employment in North Carolina can visit the program website to submit their interest. Interested candidates can complete a form to receive a link to register for CyberVetsUSA, and an enrollment advisor will then reach out to determine available training options.

During training, participants will gain access to virtual communities to enhance their learning experiences, according to the program website. Additionally, the program will offer career resources — including help with resume writing, interview techniques and career exploration — to those who achieve a 30 percent course completion milestone. Once the course is completed, participants will get a free voucher to obtain an industry certification.

North Carolina is the third state to partner with Cisco to launch CyberVetsUSA, joining Maryland and Virginia. As StateScoop reports

CyberVetsUSA project launched quietly in 2017 in Virginia, where 275 veterans underwent 12 to 15 weeks of training, followed by placement in cybersecurity and other information technology jobs. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan announced Nov. 1 that his state is also participating in the program. More states plan to enroll in 2020, according to Cisco.

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