South Carolina Launches Statewide Cyber Workforce Initiative

SC Cyber, based at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, will serve as the state’s liaison between industry and government on issues relating to cybersecurity training and workforce.

by James Folker, The Augusta Chronicle / March 8, 2018

(TNS) — SC Cyber, a statewide cybersecurity initiative, is opening an office in North Augusta's Municipal Center.

Gov. Henry McMaster cut a ribbon to officially announce the plan Wednesday.

SC Cyber, based at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, will staff the office full time starting in a couple of weeks, said Lester D. Eisner, deputy director of USC's Office of Economic Engagement, and a self-professed "cyber evangelist." Eisner will work out of the office some, too, he said.

SC Cyber's mission is to be a liaison, connecting people in academia, industry and government to help produce a skilled cybersecurity workforce.

Those skills are expected to be in high demand when the relocation of the Army's cybersecurity efforts is complete.

Mayor Bob Pettit called it the "dawn of a new prosperity," quoting from McMaster's recent State of the State address. "I can tell you that the city of North Augusta could not agree more."

The city is positioned to attract new industries and jobs, Pettit said.

"This city recognizes the cyber tsunami is here, and we're going to be ahead of that wave and ride that wave," he said.

McMaster agreed, noting that the Army is spending two-thirds of its construction budget at Fort Gordon.

"That means, with that kind of talent, that kind of money, that kind of momentum, that this place is going to be the place in the country -- unless we drop the ball -- where all things cyber will be studied, improved, used and implemented," the governor said. "We're in exactly the right place."

©2018 The Augusta Chronicle (Augusta, Ga.) Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.