Cybersecurity Degrees and Careers Connecticut Guide

Learn About Studying Cyber Security in Connecticut, Requirements and Job Growth Careers Guide

No matter where you live, cyber security is always a good option if you’re looking for an interesting career. You’ll have the option of working within a single company, making sure their networks are secured or building the network or system from the ground up if that’s what you want to do. Or, if you are looking to travel, you could work as a security consultant and have the option to work with a lot of different systems, always solving a new problem every time you step into an office. No matter what you’re looking for, or where you want to work, cyber security is everywhere, and your options are nearly endless.

Why an Advanced Degree in Connecticut is Needed

Although it is possible to get a position in the cyber security field with a certificate or two-year degree in a qualifying field, moving past entry-level positions may prove difficult without an advanced degree. It is also hard to qualify for any IT or cyber security certifications, because many require a four-year degree or several years of experience to apply. With that in mind, if you want to advance in your career in the cyber security field, getting an advanced degree is something you should seriously consider. Here you’ll find information to help you make an informed decision about which schools would offer the best degree programs for your career goals.

Connecticut Cyber Security Education Degrees & Requirements

Each program and school has its own set of requirements for admission into their programs, but below is a general overview of what’s usually required to start a program at each educational level.

Associate’s Degree

To start a two-year degree program, potential students should meet the following requirements:

  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Completed application for the chosen school
  • Transcripts from all high schools attended
  • SAT/ACT scores

Typical core courses. These will vary by program, but some courses are more universal:

  • Computer Programming 101
  • Computer Systems
  • Intro to Computer Information Systems

Bachelor’s Degree

Admission into a four-year degree programs includes all the above, but other requirements might include:

  • Letter of intent
  • Essays on a provided topic
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Resume outlining experience in the field of study, if any

Core courses may include:

  • Computer Programming
  • Computer Systems
  • Intro to Computer Information Systems
  • Intro to Networking
  • Intro to Cyber Security
  • Intro to Database Administration
  • Intro to Systems Administration

Master’s Degree

Master program requirements also vary according to the program and the school.

However, here are a few qualifications that are universal for most master’s programs:

  • Transcripts from all schools attended
  • Letters of reference
  • Resume
  • Completed application
  • GRE/GMAT scores

Core courses vary by program and school and your courses will reflect your intended major.

Certifications in Connecticut

A certificate in the cyber security field is the easiest to attain. For the most part, you’ll follow the requirements for the associate degree, since many of these certificates are offered at two-year colleges. You can also get a certificate at a four-year school as well; they simply aren’t as common.

  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Completed application for the chosen school
  • Transcripts from all high schools attended
  • SAT/ACT scores

Why is Accreditation Important?

It is important that whichever school or program you choose holds regional accreditation. Accreditation means that an organization recognized by the US Department of Education has certified that the school, and its programs provide an adequate education to its students. Another reason to choose an accredited school is that specialized certification organizations require applicants to have degrees from accredited schools. In other words, getting a degree from a school that does not hold regional accreditation can hamper your career and prove to be a waste of money.

You might also want to consider attending one of the schools that have attained Center of Academic Excellence status. This is a special designation provided to certain schools that have met the stringent requirements set by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Security Agency. Since the DHS and NSA are the two top employers of cyber security personnel in the country, it may be vital to your future career to attend one of these certified institutions. However, if you’re not at all interested in working for one of these government agencies, no other employer has the same strict requirements for CAE-certified schooling that they do, so it is not a necessity.

CAE Accredited Programs in Connecticut

  • University of Connecticut
    CAE-R / 2019-2024

Computer Science IT Bachelor’s & Master’s Programs in Connecticut

  • University of New Haven

    Located in New Haven, Connecticut, the University of New Haven has a student population of 6,867. The private school offers programs for one-year certificates, associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. The student-to-faculty ratio is 16:1, so the class sizes are large enough to create a sharing setting, but still small enough for one-on-one interactions with instructors.

    Programs Offered:

    Computer and Information Sciences - Bachelor’s, Master’s Degree & Postgraduate Certificate
    Computer Programming - Postgraduate Certificate
    Computer Science - Bachelors & Doctoral Degrees
    Information Sciences - Master’s Degree

    Tuition Cost

    In-State: $39,270
    Average Net Price: $33,214
    College Retention Rate: Full-time Students - 76%; Part-time Students - 60%

  • Quinnipiac University

    Quinnipiac University is a private college located in Hamden. The student population is 10,207 and students can study for their bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degrees, though the bulk of the population is engaged in a four-year degree program. The student-to-faculty ratio is 14:1, so you’ll have plenty of chance for discussions in class as well as the chance to reach out to instructors when necessary.

    Programs Offered:

    Computer and Information Sciences – Bachelor’s degree
    Information Science/Studies - Bachelor’s degree

    Tuition Cost

    In-State: $47,960
    Average Net Price: $40,208
    College Retention Rate: Full-time students - 86%; Part-time students - 100%

  • University of Bridgeport

    The University of Bridgeport offers certificate programs as well as bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. Located in Bridgeport, the private school has a student population of 5,485. But even with a smaller population, the student-to-faculty ratio of 16:1 means students gain perspectives from other students as well as plenty of opportunities for one-on-one time with instructors as needed.

    Programs Offered:

    Computer Science - Bachelor’s & Master’s Degrees

    Tuition Cost

    In-State: $33,055
    Average Net Price: $23,326
    College Retention Rate: Full-time students - 67%; Part-time students - 100%

  • Southern Connecticut State University

    Located in New Haven, Southern Connecticut State University offers a variety of degree programs to its just over 10,000 students. Graduates of the public university can attain bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. Class sizes are on the smaller size - the faculty-to-student ratio is 14:1 - which enables students to share ideas with each other but still create relationships with their instructors.

    Programs Offered:

    Computer and Information Services – Bachelor’s & Master’s degrees

    Tuition Cost

    In-State: $10,954
    Out-of-State: $23,464
    Average Net Price: $17,389
    College Retention Rate: Full-time students - 72%; Part-time students - 58%

  • Charter Oak State College

    Charter Oak State College is a public liberal arts school located in New Britain. The student population is 1,641, so it’s one of the smallest schools in the state. Students can attain certificates as well an associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree. Although the student population is small, the student to faculty ratio is 12:1, so there is still plenty of opportunity for group study.

    Programs Offered:

    Computer and Information Systems Security/Information Assurance - Bachelor’s Degree & Undergraduate Certificate

    Tuition Cost

    In-State: $8,301
    Out-of-State: $10,854
    Average Net Price: N/A
    College Retention Rate: Full-time students - N/A; Part-time students - 17%

Connecticut Colleges Offering Certificates and Associate Degrees

If you prefer to attend a community college, technical college, or vocational school, Connecticut can accommodate you. Certificates and associate degrees are available at several two-year schools in the state. The main difference between universities and community colleges are degree offerings. Community colleges offer certificates and associate degrees; if you want a more advanced degree you’ll have to attend a higher-level school, be that a college or university. Below are some of the two-year schools in the state and the certificates and degrees they offer in cyber security, specifically 1-year and 2-year certificates and an associate degree in computer and information sciences.

  • Capital Community College

    Tuition Cost

    In-State: $4,464
    Out-of-State: $13,232
    Average Net Price: $5,326
    College Retention Rate: Full-time students - 53%; Part-time students - 47%

    Degree Offered:

    Computer and Information System Security - Certificate & Associate Degree

  • Norwalk Community College

    Tuition Cost

    In-State: $4,414
    Out-of-State: $13,182
    Average Net Price: $7,781
    College Retention Rate: Full-time students - 63%; Part-time students - 54%

    Degree Offered:

    Computer and Information System Security – Associate Degree
    Computer Systems Networking and Telecommunications - Certificate
    Computer Software Engineering – Associate Degree

  • Gateway Community College

    Tuition Cost

    In-State: $4,424
    Out-of-State: $13,192
    Average Net Price: $6,831
    College Retention Rate: Full-time students - 57%; Part-time students - 45%

    Degree Offered:

    Computer and Information Systems Security/Information Assurance - Associate Degree
    Computer Science – Certificate & Associate Degree
    Computer Systems Networking and Telecommunications - Certificate

Scholarships

  • ESA Youth Scholarship

    Amount: $7,500 (First Place); $2,500 (Second Place)
    Deadline: Not Stated
    Link: https://esaweb.org/Programs/Youth-Scholarship
    The ESA Youth Scholarship is open to any high school students who are the children of active ESA members. To qualify, students must be a senior in high school, accepted into a college or university and intend to major or work in the safety or security industry (cyber security is included). Applicants must submit an application and an essay of no more than 500 words on a given topic.

  • Center for Cyber Safety and Education Scholarship

    Amount: Varies
    Deadline: February
    Link: https://iamcybersafe.org/s/scholarships
    This scholarship is funded by security-oriented trade groups such as JPMorgan Chase and Raytheon. It offers scholarships in the area of cyber security to approximately 20 undergraduate and 20 graduate students. To qualify, students must have a minimum GPA of 3.3 and attend an accredited college or university while majoring in a computer security field.

  • Snort Scholarship

    Amount: $10,000
    Deadline: Spring and Fall of each year
    Link: https://snort.org/community/scholarship
    The Snort scholarship is offered by Cisco and is offered to several qualified computer science or computer security majors. Students can be enrolled in undergraduate or graduate programs, must have a GPA of 2.5 or higher and meet the requirements and provide all required information as detailed on the application.

  • The Stokes Educational Scholarship Program

    Amount: Up to $30,000 per year
    Deadline: September-October
    Link: https://www.federaljobs.net/blog/the-stokes-educational-scholarship-program-nsa/
    This scholarship is for graduate and undergraduate students studying cyber security. Internships with the NSA are also available. Upon graduation, recipients are required to work for the NSA for a specified period of time, to be determined by the length of time the scholarship award covers. Applicants must have a 3.0 GPA and then maintain at least a 2.75 GPA to remain eligible to receive the award.

Conferences and Workshops

North East Annual Cybersecurity Summit (NEACS), Trumbull, CT

Presented by the International Information Systems Security Certification Consortium (ISC)2, Connecticut chapter, the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) and the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA) - this one-day conference presents participants with information about the latest cyber security threats, countermeasures, and industry and governmental partnerships. Industry experts will present lectures, demonstrations, and workshops as well as company and career advice.

CyberSecurity Series: Hartford

This is a one-day forum focused on recent cyber security developments in insurance. The conference is organized by the US Chamber of Commerce and includes topics such as tackling complex cyber-crimes, Connecticut’s strategic response to cyber threats, live leaks, and other topics.

Yale Cyber Leadership Forum

Hosted by Yale University, this forum strives to bridge the gap between law enforcement, technology experts, and businesses in cyber security. The information provided shows participants how to recognize, prepare for, and respond to cyber-threats.

Connecticut Cyber Security Jobs and Salary

In 2018, there were 17,490 people employed in the various computer-related occupations that involve cyber security within the state of Connecticut, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. According to BLS projections, the need for these employees will increase by 32% between 2018 and 2028, which is much faster than other industries in the country. Connecticut’s job outlook also reflects an increase in need for people employed in cyber security areas, with job growth estimated at 26%, much faster than growth in other industries within the state.

Below is a breakdown and information of various positions in the cyber security field:

  • Computer Network Architects - $122,200
    Number Employed: 1350 which makes up 8% of computer - focused workers
  • Information Security Analysts - $112,900
    Number Employed: 980 which makes up 6% of computer - focused workers
  • Database Administrators - $100,570
    Number Employed:1,300 which makes up 7% of computer - focused workers
  • Computer System Analysts - $94,530
    Number Employed: 6,860 which make up 39% of computer - focused workers
  • Computer Programmers - $93,370
    Number Employed: 4,110 which make up 23% of computer - focused workers
  • Network and Computer System Administrators - $122,200
    Number Employed: 2,890 which make up 17% of computer - focused workers

The majority of the jobs listed above require a bachelor’s degree and at least one certification in the area of expertise.

Resources

  • International Information Systems Security Certification Consortium (ISC)2
    The (ISC)2 has a branch in Connecticut. It’s for those who are currently working in cyber security and who are trying to attain the CISSP certification or another security certification. But even those who do not have a certification can become associate members of the organization.
  • Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA)
    This organization for system auditors and other working in the cyber security field is also active in the state of Connecticut.
  • Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA)
    Another organization for auditors, assessors, and administrators.
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