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Cybersecurity

Certified Cyber Analyst/Operator (CCAO)

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  • Overview

    In recent years, the demand for cybersecurity professionals has soared. Forbes magazine reports that there may be as many as 3.5 million unfilled positions in the industry by 2021. Increasingly, cyber employers are seeking talent from non-traditional sources to fill their workforce. At the same time, many in the workforce want to enter the cybersecurity industry but do not have the necessary skills or certifications for entry-level positions. The Certified Cyber Analyst/Operator program meets the need for cybersecurity talent by training motivated candidates and connecting them with employers in the industry.

    The Certified Cyber Analyst/Operator program is an intensive, hands-on training program designed to provide students with the technical skills and certifications required for a career in cybersecurity. Students will gain hands-on experience in offensive and defensive cybersecurity. Students who successfully complete the program will be prepared for a variety of entry-level cybersecurity roles. The program includes:


    CompTIA
    Prerequisite: Certificate in Cyber Foundations

    Students must complete the Certificate in Cyber Foundations prior to beginning the Certified Cyber Analyst Operator program. This program provides students a foundation of skills and knowledge necessary to continue into the remainder of the program. Students may also provide evidence of comparable education or experience to drop into the program.


    Certified Cyber Analyst/Operator

    Introduction to Operating Systems 

    Defensive/Cyber Analyst

    Offensive/Cyber Operator

    Capstone Project 

    • Designed to test all program skills in a week long hands-on cybersecurity challenge.

    Professional Skills

    • Critical Thinking Workshops
    • Cyber Professional Seminars

    Program Map


    APPLICATION process

    To apply for the Certified Cyber Analyst/Operator program, please follow the steps below.

    1. attend an Online information session

    2. Meet with an admissions advisor

    3. complete your application

    4. submit your application

  • Why You Should Take This Course

    Certified Cyber Analyst/Operator Certificate 

    Graduates of the Certified Cyber Analyst/Operator program who complete the program in good academic standing and score a comprehensive grade of 80% or higher will receive the Certified Cyber Analyst/Operator Certificate by UMBC Training Centers.


    Industry Certifications

    The content areas in the Certified Cyber Analyst/Operator program align with industry recognized certifications. The program will help prepare students to sit for the following exams: :


    College Credit Recommendation 

    For students pursuing a degree, this program has been approved by the American Council on Education’s (ACE) College Credit Recommendation Service for 15 semester hours in Information Systems or Computer Science at the baccalaureate level.


    Hands-on Hours 

    UMBC Training Centers follows the practitioner-scholar model. Up to 50% of classroom hours are hands-on interactive labs and projects. 


    CAREER Resources

    While the core focus of this program is to prepare students with the technical skills and credentials required to begin a career in information technology or cybersecurity, throughout the program there are also career resources made available to students, such as:

    • Career Workshops 
    • Career Resource Days 
    • Connections with regional employers and recruiters 
    • Invitations to local career events put on by program partners 

    Candidates who already have experience in the information technology field or have a technical degree may be eligible for our Cyber Apprenticeship Program.


    Experience

    The Certified Cyber Analyst/Operator program is designed for candidates with a variety of professional experiences, including both those with and without any technical experience. Students include those who want a foothold in a growing industry and those with IT experience who want to accelerate their career in a meaningful way. 70% of our students are employed within 6 months of graduating from the program and others continue on to advanced industry degrees. Our students come from diverse backgrounds and with a variety of professional experiences. 

    This program prepares candidates for the following cybersecurity job roles, as defined by the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE):


    Student Testimonials

    “In addition to the training and industry certifications, my experience in the Certified Cyber Analyst Operator program provided me with the knowledge and practical experience to find employment in the cyber security industry. One of the most valuable aspects of the program was the availability of instructors. They were a key resource throughout the program. You could easily revisit a topic with the instructor that taught the material and review or follow up with additional questions while you continued to learn more about other things.” (2019 Student)

    “The UMBC staff, which included the instructors and institutional staff, provided an environment where we could grow, make mistakes, and learn from those mistakes. The instructors would continuously instruct and educate us not only through the study material in the course, but through real time personal experience. This was vital in understanding and translating the book material from words, into real-time execution of the material. These things are priceless for entry level type student. It’s already provided me a good foundation moving forward. I built relationships/networks in the IT world, and developed skills that have already help me advance my career moving forward. The future looks really bright, and most of it has to do with the CCA/O program.

    Now I’m Security + certified (working on several others), with a security clearance. Currently I have a good job, but it’s only the start. As I look forward, there will be challenges ahead, but their exciting ones. The UMBC Training Center Cybersecurity program has provided myself and my classmates the opportunities to succeed in today’s cybersecurity and IT world. In addition, the staff and instructors have kept the door open for each student to come back and utilize their facilities, training sessions, mentorship and more to advance our career.” – (2019 Student)


    Employer Testimonials

    “I could not be more pleased with having a Certified Cyber Analyst Operator apprentice. He came to us with enough knowledge to jump in and start helping right away. His newly learned skills coupled with his ability and willingness to learn additional systems and processes quickly significantly lowered the burden often felt when training a new teammate. He quickly integrated into the team and became the person everyone wanted to interact with for help. We hired him full time after his apprenticeship and he continues to learn, grow, and consistently add value to the team.” – (2019 Employer)

    “Our experience with the UMBC Training Center has been an overall positive experience. As soon as we presented the need for a qualified candidate, the Training Center reached out to connect with us, and we were able to recruit one of our best employees. By partnering with the Training Center, we were able to not only hire qualified talent, but also minimize our time frame when directly sourcing for talent thereby reducing the associated cost with having an open position. As we continue to recruit for several roles within the company, we know we can depend upon UMBC Training Center to identify promising and qualified talent for years to come.” – (Decisions Oriented, 2019 Employer)

  • Schedule
  • FAQs

    Am I guaranteed a job after completing this program? No. While periodically throughout the program there are career resources made available to students, the core focus of this program is to provide students with the technical skills and credentials required to begin a career in information technology or cybersecurity. We continuously work to build the network of employers interested in hiring our graduates and facilitate connections to those employers, however, employment is not guaranteed and it should be expected that students will need to put in their own effort in their pursuit of new career opportunities.

    Do I need a degree to get a job in cybersecurity? While many roles in cybersecurity currently do require a technical degree, employers are unable to fill the vast demand for cybersecurity talent by recruiting college graduates alone. Increasingly, employers are looking for cyber talent from non-traditional sources such as applied training programs like this.

    What’s the difference between certifications and a degree? Certifications are earned by passing exams through industry organizations such as CompTIA and vendor-specific companies like Cisco. Passing these exams indicates to potential employers that you have the abilities associated with the skill set you are tested on. These certifications can be earned in a shorter period of time than to a degree program. Degree programs focus more on the theoretical aspect of cybersecurity, with less skills-based application of how to perform various operational and analytical tasks.

    How much do cybersecurity professionals make? Cybersecurity professionals are paid salaries commensurate with their education and experience – salary ranges for entry level positions can start at $40,000 up to $70,000, while after several years of experience this figure is closer to $80,000, increasing from that point with additional experience and expertise. For more information on the pay-scale for various roles in cybersecurity, please refer to https://www.cyberseek.org

    Do I need a clearance? You do not need a clearance to obtain a job in cybersecurity. Cybersecurity professionals work across all industries, with many not requiring clearances. However, if you do have a clearance, it can help open up more opportunities with government and contract positions.

    What are the requirements for admission? There are two different pathways for students to be accepted into the CCA/O program. Applicants are either evaluated on previous educational and professional experience or on the results of a technical assessment administered to those without an IT background. We provide resources for test prep are provided, and the assessment is focused on computational logic and problem solving rather than specific IT knowledge. Additionally, an interview may be required for some applicants based on the criteria above.

    How much does the program cost? What funding options are available? The total cost of the program is $19,995 in addition to a $25 application fee and $75 reservation fee. There are multiple financing options available, including SallieMae Smart Option Student Loansin-house payment plans, and state grants awarded to qualified candidates. We are also approved to accept VA funding for retired and transitioning service members.

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