May 27, 2020
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UMA Partners with Valencia College to Offer Online Cybersecurity Degree to Students in Florida

Community Author: UMA News
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The University of Maine at Augusta (UMA) is partnering with Valencia College in Orlando, FL to provide graduates from Valencia’s Network Engineering Technology program the ability to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Cybersecurity from UMA.

“UMA is proud of our long history of providing an accessible education to Maine citizens through our robust online programs,” said Rebecca Wyke, UMA president.  “We are excited about this opportunity with Valencia College, as the cybersecurity program is a perfect model for extending UMA’s online programs to areas outside of Maine. By including students from other states in the class, it enriches the learning experience.”

Under this agreement, qualified Valencia students who have completed an Associate of Science degree at Valencia would be enrolled in UMA’s cybersecurity program to complete a Bachelor of Science degree online.

“Our graduates with an associate in science degree in network engineering technology have been facing the challenge of applying for cybersecurity jobs that prefer applicants with bachelor’s degrees. The articulation agreement with UMA will help them overcome this hurdle,” said Dr. Wael Yousif, chair of Valencia College’s network engineering technology program.

The UMA program in cybersecurity is recognized by the National Security Agency and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense (CAE-CD) program.  It is a cutting edge academic program offering four focus areas of study for students: information assurance, network security analyst, cyber forensics, and general. Students in the online program will participate in a virtual lab environment on UMA’s advanced computing group’s supercomputer.

As outlined in the agreement, Valencia students take 11 to 14 courses online through UMA and participate in UMA’s online student orientation. Students will complete internships in the Orlando area and those currently employed while completing a degree may substitute a cybersecurity research project for this requirement.

“The whole goal of the program is to provide a lot of hands-on experience, so that when students graduate, they have skills that can be applied in the workplace on day one,” says Henry Felch, associate professor of computer information systems and cybersecurity at the University of Maine at Augusta.