The CyberWatch West Advanced Technology Education Center, funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), was established in October of 2011. The Center covers a 14-state region and is led by four core educational partners: Whatcom Community College (WA); California State Polytechnic University, Pomona; California State University, San Bernardino; and Coastline Community College (CA). Whatcom Community College serves as the lead institution for the Center. The overarching goal of CyberWatch West (CWW) is to strengthen and build an information security workforce and produce a greater number of highly qualified information assurance professionals in California and the Pacific Northwest. To accomplish this goal, CyberWatch West is concentrating on the following four major areas: (1) student activities, including meaningful internships and a cyber-defense league with weekly virtual exercises; (2) assistance in curriculum development based on recognized standards and creation of cybersecurity pathways from community colleges to four-year institutions; (3) a faculty development and mentor program to help infuse cybersecurity concepts into coursework; (4) outreach and partnership with regional community colleges, universities, high schools, and industry to determine and assist with regional needs in cybersecurity education. Each of the core partners has large minority student enrollments and the project is targeting these underrepresented groups in cybersecurity. In addition, the consortium includes dozens of other postsecondary institutions throughout the western United States and its outreach program is reaching a large number of high schools. The dissemination efforts include a web portal, presentations at national conferences, and an active participation in the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE). On the site, visitors will find information about joining the CyberWatch West consortium, its industry advisory board, student competitions, faculty professional development opportunities, degrees offered, as well as press releases about the center.
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