COLORADO SPRINGS — Several school districts are offering career classes in cyber security. District 11 is attracting international attention.
“We saw the need from the perspective of the workforce need and there’s an excess of jobs, high paying jobs,” Cyber Security Instructor Bill Tomeo said.
The cyber security class is part of career pathways offered through Odyssey Early College and Career Options. It’s a field in high demand with an estimated shortage of three million workers by next year.
“We had poeple who lost their jobs, and cyber was a great opportunity to give that next generation jobs that pay well,” added Tomeo.
Tomeo knows, while working for Hewett Packard years ago, he witnessed manufacturing jobs leaving Colorado Springs and moving overseas.
Now students and leaders from those countries are returning to learn about cyber security.
“The U.S. State Department has 30 countries from around the world and we’re hosting them today, so they can see what it’s like,” Tomeo explained.
The cyber businesses in the area send their leaders, mentors and guest speakers to the class knowing it’s a win-win for them.
“They want to inspire students to get into cyber, one level its social responsibility and another they want employees for the future and they want to see the pipeline start at high school,” Tomeo said.
District 11 students can earn up to 20 college credits taking the career pathways courses.
A bonus is that students don’t have to take the classes to get involved, they can join the Cyber Patriot Program on the districts website.