Michigan Program Opens the Door to Cybersecurity Training, Careers

The Hillsdale Intermediate School District (ISD) Career Center pairs high school students with state of the art technology and the chance to earn various cybersecurity certifications.

by Andy Barrand, Hillsdale Daily News / June 11, 2018
Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder David Kidd

(TNS) — HILLSDALE, Mich. — Sitting in front of various drones, virtual reality goggles and other computer parts Gov. Rick Snyder, State Rep. Eric Leutheuser and Sen. Mike Shirkey listened to a presentation by Wayne Boggs, cybersecurity instructor at the Hillsdale Intermediate School District (ISD) Career Center.

Snyder's visit to the Career Center came only minutes after completing a graduation ceremony for the city of Hillsdale. The city of Hillsdale and its administration graduated from the governor's Rising Tide initiative on Friday.

While outlining the virtues of the newly formed class Boggs shared the successes of its first year. In its first year the program had 18 students enrolled, 10 of which were seniors. Out of those 10 seniors nine of them are pursuing a career in cybersecurity or a related information technology field.

He went onto say that a lot of his students put in many hours outside of the classroom working on additional certification.

A student who is part of the program for two years could feasibly earn up to 40 college credits in two years. That is two thirds of the required courses for a cybersecurity degree from Jackson College.

"We have to rise up to prepare students with the talent and technology they need," said Boggs.

The program at the Career Center gives students the opportunity to gain 17 different certifications, while working with state of the art technology. The program even has an identical computer to the Michigan State Police's cybercrime machine.

While listening to Boggs' presentation Snyder asked several questions and applauded the Career Center in their efforts to prepare students for the workforce.

The Career Center along with the centers in Jackson, Calhoun, Bedford and Lenawee counties are starting a pilot program with Jackson College this fall to provide additional training to students enrolled in the program. Students will be allowed to take online classes from adjunct professors from the five counties specializing in different certifications.

Several area manufacturing leaders along with representatives from Jackson College attended Friday's event.

©2018 Hillsdale Daily News, Mich. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.