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College launches new career certificate in cybersecurity

by Public Relations and Marketing | Published Apr 24, 2020

Responding to the growing demand for skilled workers who can help safeguard an organization’s digital infrastructure, the College of Lake County has created a new 30-credit career certificate in cybersecurity, scheduled to launch in the Fall 2020 Semester.

The certificate consists of 10 courses that not only apply to an A.A.S. degree, they will allow students to acquire specific industry certifications with additional efforts as they progress, said Sanjay Kumar, chair of CLC’s computer information technology department.

“We created the certificate based on input fromPhoto of computer screens an advisory committee that included information technology professionals from industry,” he said. “The program will prepare students to protect businesses as well as other institutions that currently use electronic commerce from malicious cyberattacks and data theft.”

A graduate with the credential can find work as a cybersecurity specialist, security analyst, vulnerability analyst as well as firewall and VPN specialist. The certificate is designed for professionals returning to upgrade skills or students who are interested in a first career in IT security.

Course work begins with foundational classes in network operating systems and network automation. Subsequent courses focus on cybersecurity, including how to look for weaknesses and vulnerabilities in target systems, Kumar said.

The certificate can be completed independently as well as by those pursuing the network administration and cybersecurity certificate as well as those enrolled in the A.A.S. degree program with the specialty option of network administration and cybersecurity, Kumar added.

Additionally, the certificate prepares graduates to take the industry’s leading certification exams, including Security+, Linux+, C|EH, CySA+, Cisco Cybersecurity Cyber Ops. The certifications come from leading institutions such as EC-Council, CompTia and Cisco.

The need for the cybersecurity certificate is based on local and regional demand. Positions related to cybersecurity are projected to grow by 32 percent through 2028, much faster than the average for all occupations, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. “The demand in the Chicago-Milwaukee area is projected to remain strong as the industry continues to evolve,” Kumar said.

For more information on CLC’s computer information technology program, visit


About College of Lake County:

The College of Lake County is a comprehensive community college committed to equitable high-quality education, cultural enrichment and partnerships to advance the diverse communities it serves in northeastern Illinois. Offered at three campuses in Grayslake, Vernon Hills and Waukegan or online, college classes are affordable and accessible to help each student achieve academic, career and personal goals. More than 70,000 students graduated with degrees and certificates since the college opened in 1969. The College of Lake County is the only higher-education institution ranked among the top 15 best places to work in Illinois by Forbes and is a national leader in many areas, including sustainability and conservation.