The overall goal of PACE is to develop and implement a Pathway to Advancement of Cybersecurity Education from MS all the way to 4-year College with multiple opportunities for employment exit points.

Specific Objectives

  1. Establish a comprehensive Cybersecurity Pathway from at least middle school to 4-year institutions with a number of exit points.
  2. Encourage visible, fun and popular activities designed to improve student matriculation, persistence, and graduation.
  3. Improve the number and quality of applicants for high paying Cybersecurity careers.


Highlights for Objective 1:

  • Major Activities

    • The existing Cybersecurity (12 units) and Cyber Defense (25 – 27 units) College certificate programs and AS degree program in Cyber Defense were selected as the pathway to pilot for the first year (see Attachment #1)
    • Existing HS students were enrolled into pathway courses and encouraged to complete the program
    • The pathway were discussed with industry advisors and MS/HS instructors for modification
    • Placeholder
      High school students participating in the Saturday Academy at Cypress College.
  • Key outcomes

    • Based on the advisory and one-on-one feedback, the Cybersecurity certificate (16 – 17 units) Cyber Defense certificate (25 – 27 units) and Cyber Defense AS (60 units) were revised and submitted for the curriculum review and approval process to be effective Fall 2021.
    • 50 HS students completed pathway-related courses in Fall of 2019. This number increased to 77 in Spring of 2019.
    • Cypress College faculty members taught 3 Saturday academy courses in Fall of 2019. During Spring of 2020, faculty members taught 2 Saturday academy courses and taught at one HS.
    • 1 pathway course (CIS 190) was articulated with our partner HS (Magnolia). Students will go through 1 year of instruction by their qualified HS teacher (Cyber Literacy 2 course) to receive credit for the CIS 190 College course.

Highlights for Objective 2:

  • Major Activities

    • Collaborated with partner MS (Dale) and HS (Magnolia) to develop skills-based Cybersecurity modules
    • CyberPatriot program was further established to include fun and popular activities while promoting team work and troubleshooting skills
    • Circadence; a Cybersecurity learning platform that utilizes cyber range and gamification to provide active learning; was selected to engage MS/HS students.
    • NETLAB system was expanded to provide additional resources to MS/HS instructor involved in teaching Cybersecurity curriculum
    • Placeholder
      A record of 41 Costo Pizzas served in a regular CyberPatriot training event at Cypress College.
  • Key outcomes

    • During Fall of 2019 and Spring 2020, the Cybersecurity training modules were delivered in Dale MS and Magnolia HS by MS/HS instructors and College mentors. 515 students participated in a total of 8 sessions.
    • In April of 2020, more than 350 MS/HS students/parents/coaches participated in the virtual award ceremony for the CyberPatriot program
    • Magnolia HS Cybersecurity instructors and College mentors used NETLAB system to provide virtual labs for classroom teaching and Cybersecurity training in Fall of 2020.

Highlights for Objective 3:

  • Major Activities

    • Consulted with the industry professionals to increase students’ employment opportunities.
    • Placeholder
      Industry advisory meeting held in December of 2019 at Cypress College
  • Key outcomes

    • Based on the industry advisory recommendations, the curriculum is revised to include bootcamp sessions to prepare students for industry certifications such as CompTIA ITF+, Network+, Security+, CySA+, Cisco CCNA and Cisco CyberOps and AWS Cloud Practitioner.
    • A committee is formed (faculty and industry advisors) to develop a digital portfolio for students that will include digital badging for soft and hard skills.
    • Soft skills badges will be based on instructors evaluating students as they progress through the pathway. Evaluation will be based on their participation and team work in class, and completion of the 21st Century Skills badging ( 5 areas of competency were selected for badging by the advisory committee (It is also based on students obtaining badges from the foundation observation of students as they complete the pathway and will include 5 areas of competency (Adaptability, Communication, Analysis/Solution Mindset, Collaboration, and Empathy)
    • Hard skills badges will include College and Industry certifications and field experience through project-based learning and internship
    • The committee will further fine-tune the badging process and bring it back to the larger panel for modifications/approval for implementation in Fall 2020

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