FSCJ was recently awarded a $10,000 Economic Mobility Grant from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation to prepare students for meaningful employment and support the College’s capacity to deliver practical cybersecurity education.
The majority of the funds will be used to build a more robust paid internship experience for 20 students in the Associate in Science in IT Security program during the 2017-18 academic year which will enhance the College’s overall workforce development initiatives, while also addressing the community’s shortage of highly skilled cybersecurity professionals.
In partnership with the Northeast Florida Regional STEM2Hub, Jacksonville’s Museum of Science and History (MOSH) and Brunet-García Advertising Agency, the remaining funds will support the development and implementation of an interactive, educational exhibit with the purpose of raising awareness of cybersecurity issues and informing youth about the field.
As cyberattacks have become more frequent, sophisticated and financially damaging, the demand for experienced and proficient cybersecurity professionals has grown significantly. According to economic modeling data from Emsi for Duval and Nassau counties, Florida universities and state colleges are not producing enough graduates to fulfill the need. In fact, for every new IT security student graduating within the region, there are nine open positions waiting to be filled in northeast Florida.
“We are grateful to the Bank of America Charitable Foundation for partnering with us in our efforts to support our students and the entire community through workforce development initiatives,” said Dean of Career Education Dr. Mamdouh Babi. “Their generosity directly impacts our students’ learning and employment opportunities and, at a time when cyber activity is both an economic engine and a national security concern, aids in closing the talent gap.”
Through the grant, Bank of America continues their focus on the economic mobility of individuals and families by investing in workforce development and education to address basic and prevalent needs.