Virginia Tech's College of Engineering offers an undergraduate minor in cybersecurity. Cybersecurity broadly covers the fields of information security, network security, and computer system security. As bad actors seek to steal information, protecting that information, the systems that process and store it, and the networks that carry it becomes increasingly important.
This minor seeks to provide a core technical basis for careers in secure system design and operation. Students graduating with a degree in computer science or computer engineering with a minor in cybersecurity could expect careers in software engineering, embedded systems engineering, or information systems management, with an emphasis on designing, developing, operating, or analyzing security features or subsystems.
Note that Virginia Tech's undergraduate education in cybersecurity, while hands-on, focuses on core principles of security rather than specific information technology components and systems from specific vendors. Students may also find it beneficial to consider professional certification, such as the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP).
Given Virginia Tech's location in the mid-Atlantic region, there are a large number of employers in the Washington DC metropolitain area with a keen interest in cybersecurity, including defense contractors and federal agencies. Those considering careers in the national security sector should consider the requirements for the US Department of Defense Information Assurance Workforce Improvement Program.
The undergraduate minor in cybersecurity is a College of Engineering program, principally focused on students majoring in Computer Science or Computer Engineering, but is open to any student able to meet the necessary prerequisites. The following are the requirements for completing the minor.
One of the following networks courses:
- ECE 4564: Network Application Design
- CS 4254: Computer Network Arch and Programming
- CS 4244 Internet Software Development
- ECE 4614: Telecommunication Networks
One of the following computer systems courses:
- CS 3214: Computer Systems
- CS/ECE 4504: Computer Organization
- ECE 3574: Applied Software Engineering
Two core security courses:
- ECE 4560: Network Security Fundamentals
- CS 4264: Principles of Computer Security
One of the following interdisciplinary course:
- ACIS 4684: Information Systems Security and Assurance
- FIN 4014: Internet, Electronic, and Online Law
- MATH 4175: Cryptography I
- MATH 4176: Cryptography II
One elective courses from either the networks, computer systems, or interdisciplinary list
One credit seminar course
Cybersecurity Minor Program Director: Dr. Joe Tront