Cybersecurity Programs in Michigan

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Michigan is an up-and-comer on the cyber security scene. It’s one of just three states to receive full marks in 2015 from the Pell Center for implementing a Cyber R&D agenda encompassing higher education, workforce development and industry engagement. In other words: You can find good cyber security programs there. If you’re already familiar with the latest developments, jump to our list of Michigan schools with relevant degrees and certificates. If not, read on for info about research projects, startups, scholarships and graduate placement opportunities in the Wolverine State.

Studying Cyber Security in Michigan

Back in 2014, Walsh College and Ferris State University represented Michigan on HP’s rankings of the top 25 percent of schools with cyber security programs. But cyber security is a fast-changing field, with new programs muscling in for attention and funding all the time. Here are some big recent happenings:

  • The Michigan Cyber Range is a virtual center for cyber security training with physical hubs across the state where people can access courses and test software on a secure, fiber optic network. The newest hub is at Wayne State University; it opened its doors in January 2017, joining Eastern Michigan University, Ferris State University, Northern Michigan University and Oakland University.
  • Think of the Committee on National Security Systems (CNSS) as a gatekeeper for training standards for IT security. In fact, CNSS maintains six different sets of standards for everything from risk analysts to systems managers. Ferris State is one of just eight schools in the U.S. to meet all six standards, giving their graduates a wider array of career choices.What else is good about Ferris? In 2013 it became the first U.S. university to be designated a Center of Digital Forensics Academic Excellence by the U.S. Department of Defense, paving the way for potential defense laboratory research projects.
  • University of Michigan faculty members have a knack for establishing startups and watching them grow. Virta Laboratories, cofounded by an Electrical Engineering professor, won a National Science Foundation grant in 2016 after creating a plug-in device that monitors health equipment for suspicious power usage. Another College of Engineering prof was behind Quadmetrics, which uses predictive analytics to track hacks. The startup was purchased by California-based FICO in 2016.
  • In 2014 University of Michigan and Eastern Michigan University received a three year grant from the National Science Foundation worth over $220,000 each. They’re charged with finding weaknesses in the nation’s electrical grid and anticipating hackers’ routes of attack.

Online Cyber Security Programs in Michigan

While the state’s colleges have plenty of in-person programs and certificates, online offerings are harder to come by. Only a handful of schools run online certificate, bachelor’s or master’s programs in cyber security. And Davenport University is the only one to do so at multiple degree levels.

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You may notice that the state’s baccalaureate degrees are clustered around cyber defense and information technology, while the master’s degrees are heavy on information assurance. In the sections below, we’ll briefly explain what makes each online program unique, even if its title isn’t.

Online Bachelor’s Degrees in Cyber Security

A four-year degree is the ideal starting point for a career in cyber security. In Michigan, you have three well-regarded options for an online BS: Baker College, Davenport University and Walsh College.

Let’s start with Walsh’s BS in Information Technology because it’s actually a hybrid program. The school uses a 2+2 format, in which every courses comes with two hours of on-campus instruction per week and two hours of online study. Why consider this program? Because it will give you a broad understanding of IT issues, with focus areas in not just cyber security but also networking, data and software development.

Turning to fully online baccalaureate degrees, Baker College has two: a BS in IT and Security and a BS in Cyber Defense. The former should qualify you for a network administrator or system analyst position; the latter is for aspiring information technology specialists expected to secure organizations’ infrastructure from internal and external threats. While the two programs overlap quite a bit, Cyber Defense enrollees will receive a lot of instruction in Linux and Microsoft Windows administration that BSIT students won’t have.

The final option for an online baccalaureate is Davenport University’s BS in Cyber Defense, which is different from Baker College’s program of the same name because students choose from two specialties: 1) Information Assurance and 2) Healthcare Information and Assurance. Students who enjoy numbers can add Math Modeling to either specialty.

Online Master’s Degrees in Cyber Security

Most jobs don’t require a master’s degree, but the trend is shifting in the direction of graduate degrees, especially for specialized positions and management roles. Two Michigan universities have master’s programs.

The first is Davenport. Its MS in Information Assurance expects students to enter the program with understanding of security, basic programming, cryptography, networking and statistical analysis. If not, they’ll have to complete foundational courses before diving into advanced classes that take those same subjects up a level and add a healthy dose of management coursework.

The other program is University of Detroit Mercy’s MS in Information Assurance with a major in Cybersecurity. The classes are broader than Davenport’s and so is the student pool, attracting everyone from techies to businesspeople to law enforcement, thanks to its balanced approach of technical and managerial coursework.

Online Certificate Programs in Cyber Security

At the graduate level, a certificate is an introduction to a new skill in a shorter amount of time than a master’s. At the undergraduate level, a certificate can be a segue to a two- or four-year degree. And since Michigan has no cyber security associate programs online, you can get a certificate online and fill out your two-year course of study with general ed credits from distance learning sources.

Only one school offers certificates: Central Michigan University. Its hybrid certificate in Cybersecurity can be taken at the undergraduate or graduate level and is designed for students with networking experience who are seeking any or all of the following certifications: CompTIA Security+, Certificate of Cloud Security Knowledge, or Certified Information Systems Security Professional.

Cyber Security Scholarships in Michigan

Taking cyber security coursework in Michigan is a good move, in part because of the Regional Cybersecurity Education Collaborative (RCEC), which was unveiled in late 2016. The collaborative will distribute $3,000 to $5,000 scholarships for noncredit, for-credit and certification courses.

While you’re waiting for the RCEC to work up a full head of steam, you’ll have other funding options. Some are easy. When you apply, many colleges will automatically make you eligible for their scholarships. But it’s reassuring to be aware of funding available specifically for cyber security majors. We’ve gathered a few examples:

Ferris State University

Monroe County Community College

Oakland Community College

  • CIS Scholarship: Computer Information Systems students at the Auburn Hills campus, including those with a cyber security or homeland security focus, may qualify for this award if they have financial need and at least six credits to their name.
  • Delta Network Services Endowed Scholarship: Information Technology students with financial need and six credits under their belts may qualify for this award.

Saginaw Valley State University

  • Russell C. Will Memorial Scholarship: Saginaw Valley State students can only minor in Cyber Security, but those who major in Computer Science or Computer Information Systems can claim $500. The committee prefers Saginaw, Bay and Midland county residents.

University of Michigan-Dearborn

College of Engineering & Computer Science Undergraduate Scholarships: The College channels a number of sponsored scholarships to its students, including Digital Forensics majors. The awards range between $1,000 to $5,000 yearly.

Cyber Security Events in Michigan

Cyber Security Meetups & Communities in Michigan

Joining a community of fellow professionals or students can ignite your learning by exposing you to unfamiliar concepts and fresh approaches to problems. Look into the following groups to start:

  • ARBSEC: ARBSEC is a chilled-out alternative to a professional society. Ann Arbor’s information security pros get together every first Wednesday of the month to shoot the breeze.
  • Detroit Area IAM User Group: IAM stands for “identity and access management.” If you knew that, you might be interested in gathering every three months to listen to member presentations and discuss best practices.
  • MiSec: MiSec opens itself up to anyone interested in information security. With regular meetups in Jackson, Lansing and Southfield, members can listen to outside speakers, get their hands dirty with workshops, or participant in competitions.
  • OWASP Detroit: OWASP stands for “Open Web Application Security Project.” The Detroit chapter meets two to three times per year for security presentations and discussions as well as chapter business.
  • ZooSec: The Kalamazoo Michigan InfoSec Meetup is a small, informal gathering where local professionals and amateurs alike trade information and seek advice on the projects they’re working on.ARBSEC: ARBSEC is a chilled-out alternative to a professional society. Ann Arbor’s information security pros get together every first Wednesday of the month to shoot the breeze.
  • Detroit Area IAM User Group: IAM stands for “identity and access management.” If you knew that, you might be interested in gathering every three months to listen to member presentations and discuss best practices.
  • MiSec: MiSec opens itself up to anyone interested in information security. With regular meetups in Jackson, Lansing and Southfield, members can listen to outside speakers, get their hands dirty with workshops, or participant in competitions.
  • OWASP Detroit: OWASP stands for “Open Web Application Security Project.” The Detroit chapter meets two to three times per year for security presentations and discussions as well as chapter business.
  • ZooSec: The Kalamazoo Michigan InfoSec Meetup is a small, informal gathering where local professionals and amateurs alike trade information and seek advice on the projects they’re working on.

Cyber Security Conferences & Workshops in Michigan

Step 1 to boosting your security knowledge and expanding your network is looking for cheap, daylong events at local colleges. The Security at University of Michigan IT (SUMIT) conference, for instance, gathers national tech experts every October for a series of panel discussions. Michigan State runs its own annual event, the Interdisciplinary Conference on Cybercrime. And over in Ypsilanti, Eastern Michigan sponsors the yearly Digital Divas program for high school girls interested in STEM careers, which features breakout sessions on cyber security.

Below are a few bigger conferences taking place away from Michigan’s campuses:

  • ARBSEC: ARBSEC is a chilled-out alternative to a professional society. Ann Arbor’s information security pros get together every first Wednesday of the month to shoot the breeze.
  • Detroit Area IAM User Group: IAM stands for “identity and access management.” If you knew that, you might be interested in gathering every three months to listen to member presentations and discuss best practices.
  • MiSec: MiSec opens itself up to anyone interested in information security. With regular meetups in Jackson, Lansing and Southfield, members can listen to outside speakers, get their hands dirty with workshops, or participant in competitions.
  • OWASP Detroit: OWASP stands for “Open Web Application Security Project.” The Detroit chapter meets two to three times per year for security presentations and discussions as well as chapter business.
  • ZooSec: The Kalamazoo Michigan InfoSec Meetup is a small, informal gathering where local professionals and amateurs alike trade information and seek advice on the projects they’re working on.ARBSEC: ARBSEC is a chilled-out alternative to a professional society. Ann Arbor’s information security pros get together every first Wednesday of the month to shoot the breeze.
  • Detroit Area IAM User Group: IAM stands for “identity and access management.” If you knew that, you might be interested in gathering every three months to listen to member presentations and discuss best practices.
  • MiSec: MiSec opens itself up to anyone interested in information security. With regular meetups in Jackson, Lansing and Southfield, members can listen to outside speakers, get their hands dirty with workshops, or participant in competitions.
  • OWASP Detroit: OWASP stands for “Open Web Application Security Project.” The Detroit chapter meets two to three times per year for security presentations and discussions as well as chapter business.
  • ZooSec: The Kalamazoo Michigan InfoSec Meetup is a small, informal gathering where local professionals and amateurs alike trade information and seek advice on the projects they’re working on.

Cyber Security Jobs in Michigan

Cyber security is a growing field, but until recently Michigan was a shrinking state. With Michigan on the upswing and emphasizing technological development, now is the time to secure a job there. Detroit, Lansing and Grand Rapids feature the largest concentrations of information security analysts in the state, but we’re talking fewer than 1,000 people total.

That’s not enough, so the state has formed the Regional Cybersecurity Education Collaboration (RCEC) to ensure students receive relevant skills for the workforce. The RCEC will link participating private organizations directly to graduates from academic institutions — Central Michigan University, Northern Michigan University and Wayne State University to start with — for internships and job offers.

One of the key industries RCEC is targeting is the auto industry. Today’s vehicles run on computers that can be hacked, and Detroit automakers like General Motors are seriously addressing the threat. So, too, are other Fortune 500 stalwarts like Ford Motor Company and Penske Automotive Group. Even smaller firms like TowerSec are carving out a niche by selling automotive security solutions.

If you’re planning on graduate-level studies, it’s worth looking at the state’s research universities as potential employers. The University of Michigan is the prime destination, having incubated QuadMetrics, a cyber security startup that analyzes risk using quantitative data. That’s just one of many research projects to be funded and commercialized through the U-M Office of Tech Transfer.

Cyber Security Salaries in Michigan

The median average salary for an information security analyst in the U.S. in 2015 was about $90,000, with the average Michigander pulling in about $5,000 less than that figure, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). BLS stats more or less back up Indeed.com’s findings.

Indeed figures suggest three paths to earning more money: Get promoted to a senior information security analyst ($104,000 annual salary), move into an IT manager position ($106,000), or find work as an IT security specialist ($114,000). No matter how you look at it, these figures aren’t bad, especially considering Michigan boasted the third-lowest cost of living of any state in 2016.

All Cyber Security Programs in Michigan

Below are all the matching programs we found in our directory, from 19 Michigan schools.

School NameProgramsNSA
Baker CollegeAllen Park, Michigan
Bachelor of Science in Information Technology and Security – Concentration in Information Assurance
Bachelor of Science in Information Technology and Security – Concentration in Information Assurance and Cyber Security
Bachelor of Science in Information Technology and Security – Concentration in Network Professional
Bachelor of Science in Information Technology and Security – Concentration in Server Administration
Central Michigan UniversityMount Pleasant, Michigan
Graduate Certificate in Cybersecurity
Undergraduate Certificate in Cybersecurity
Davenport UniversityGrand Rapids, Michigan
BS in Cyber Defense Digital Forensics, BS
Master of Science in Information Assurance and Cyber Security
Network Security, BS
NSA
CAE
Eastern Michigan UniversityYpsilanti, Michigan
Bachelor of Science in Information Assurance & Cyber Defense
NSA
CAE
Ferris State UniversityBig Rapids, Michigan
Associate in Applied Science in Information Security and Intelligence
Bachelor of Science in Information Security and Intelligence
Certificate in Cybersecurity
Certificate in Cybersecurity: Ethical Hacking
Information Security and Intelligence – 5 Year BS and MS
Master of Science in Information Security and Intelligence
Minor in Digital Forensic/Cybersecurity
Minor in Information Security and Intelligence
NSA
CAE
Grand Rapids Community CollegeGrand Rapids, Michigan
Associates of Arts in Information Security
Associates of Arts in Network Administration
NSA
CAE
Henry Ford Community CollegeDearborn, Michigan
Associate of Applied Science in Computer Information Systems – Cybersecurity
Certificate in Cybersecurity
NSA
CAE
Jackson Community CollegeJackson, Michigan
Associate in Applied Science – Cyber Security
Macomb Community CollegeWarren, Michigan
Associate of Applied Science in Information Technology – Network Security
Michigan Technological UniversityHoughton, Michigan
Bachelor of Science in Computer Network and System Administration – Cybersecurity
Master of Science in Cybersecurity
Monroe County Community CollegeMonroe, Michigan
Computer Information Systems – Cybersecurity and Information Assurance
Northern Michigan UniversityMarquette, Michigan
Bachelor of Science in Information Assurance/Cyber Defense
Oakland Community CollegeBloomfield Hills, Michigan
Certificate in Computer Information Systems – Cyber Security
Oakland UniversityRochester Hills, Michigan
Master of Science in Cyber Security
Saginaw Valley State UniversityUniversity Center, Michigan
Minor in Cybersecurity
University of Detroit MercyDetroit, Michigan
5 Year BS/MS in Cyber Security and Intelligence Studies
Bachelor of Science in Computer & Information Systems – Cybersecurity Major
Master of Science in Information Assurance (MS-IA)
NSA
CAE
University of Michigan-DearbornDearborn, Michigan
Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity and Information Assurance – Cybersecurity and Privacy Concentration
Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity and Information Assurance – Digital Forensics Concentration
Bachelor of Science in Digital Forensics
Walsh CollegeTroy, Michigan
Bachelor of Science in Information Technology – Cyber Security
NSA
CAE
Wayne County Community College DistrictDetroit, Michigan
Associate in Applied Science in Computer Information Systems: Cybersecurity
Certificate in Computer Information Systems: Cybersecurity
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Advertisement CyberDegrees.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Are you ready to find a school that's aligned with your interests?

Find the right education path to take advantage of this fast-growing industry and join the front-lines on technology and security.