Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards and the Director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) Jen Easterly, on Nov. 7, announced that CYBER.ORG Range – a no-cost, safe, virtual environment for K-12 students to learn cybersecurity skills – will be expanded to students nationwide.
CYBER.ORG Range – initially funded by the state of Louisiana – will be expanded through CISA’s Cybersecurity Education and Training Assistance Program (CETAP) grant to ensure that students in all 50 states have the skills and training needed to successfully enter the cybersecurity workforce.
A workforce development organization funded by CISA’s CETAP grant and an initiative of the Cyber Innovation Center, CYBER.ORG offers free resources to ensure K-12 teachers are empowered to teach cybersecurity in the classroom.
As one of those resources, CYBER.ORG Range allows educators to help students practice deploying and discovering cyberattacks in a safe, controlled, virtual environment.
“The CYBER.ORG Range is designed to lower the existing barriers to entry into the cybersecurity field by helping ensure that all students are cyber literate and have core cybersecurity skills,” Laurie Salvail, director of CYBER.ORG, said in a press release.
“CYBER.ORG, through the CETAP grant provided by CISA, is doing critical work in Louisiana to advance the cybersecurity workforce,” said Gov. Edwards. “By providing tools for educators and students, CYBER.ORG is helping pave the path to successful entry into high-paying careers in Louisiana’s growing cybersecurity industry.”
With growing cyberattacks on both the public and private sectors, expanding access to cybersecurity education has become more critical than ever. And according to Easterly, “to meet the cyber threats of the future, we need to start by preparing for them today.”
The labs in CYBER.ORG’s Cybersecurity Course are also designed to prepare students for the CompTIA Security+ Exam, which propels students forward to intermediate-level cybersecurity jobs. All labs in the CYBER.ORG Cybersecurity course can be completed on the CYBER.ORG Range.
“Early cyber education is critical to our national security and tomorrow’s cybersecurity professionals are sitting in today’s classrooms. The CYBER.ORG Range will make hands-on cyber education accessible to students nationwide helping to build the foundation of our nation’s future cybersecurity,” said Easterly.