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Although one of the smallest states in the U.S., New Jersey is the most densely populated and claims more than 8,870,000 residents. Known for its high-quality education system, the state boasts 86 institutions of higher learning.

The growing demand for computer security experts makes a cybersecurity degree at any level an excellent investment in your future career and salary potential. New Jersey offers some of the best cybersecurity schools, along with plentiful job opportunities in the field.

Keep reading for more information about pursuing a cybersecurity career in New Jersey. Our guide explains what to expect while earning a cybersecurity degree, potential careers for graduates, and how to choose the right program. At the bottom of this page, check out our list of the top cybersecurity schools in NJ.

New Jersey at a Glance

Population 8,870,685
Climate Average Annual Temperature: 52.7℉
Annual Precipitation: 47 inches
Major Sports Teams Jets, Devils, Red Bulls, Giants, Trenton Thunder
Per Capita Income $44,888
Fortune 500 Companies 28
% of Workforce in Tech 6%
Economic Impact of Tech Industry $48 billion
Number of Higher Learning Institutions 86

Sources: World Population Review, Current Results, Department of Numbers, Fortune, Cyberstates™, NCES

Why Go to School for Cybersecurity in New Jersey?

Pursuing a cybersecurity degree in New Jersey offers many potential benefits. The state is home to dozens of postsecondary institutions, including some of the best cybersecurity schools in the United States.

Its large population, close proximity to other major cities, and role as a home base for numerous Fortune 500 companies also make New Jersey a great place to launch a career in cybersecurity. The state boasts a tech workforce of 251,437 and offers median tech wages 119% higher than the national median for tech jobs.

Students who attend cybersecurity schools in NJ may make professional connections that can offer benefits after graduation. Internships, volunteer gigs, and capstone experiences can lead to interviews and job opportunities. If you plan to look for jobs in New Jersey after you graduate, consider the benefits of earning your degree in the Garden State.

Some NJ students can save money by attending college in their home state. The Garden State Guarantee makes college more accessible and affordable for New Jerseyans. A New Jersey resident who earns less than $65,000 annually can complete their third and fourth years of an undergraduate degree for $0 in tuition.

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Education Statistics for New Jersey

Considering its small geographic size, New Jersey offers an impressive number of postsecondary institutions. The state is home to 62 four-year colleges and 24 two-year colleges. Student spending on college is a bit lower than the national average, and fewer students in the state enroll in distance education.

However, education clearly matters to residents of the Garden State. New Jersey boasts a well-educated population with higher-than-average percentages of adults over 25 with a bachelor's degree or higher.

Higher Education Statistics New Jersey Data National Data
Four-Year Colleges 62 2,679
Two-Year Colleges 24 1,303
Students Enrolled in Distance Education 62% 72.8%
Postsecondary Education Appropriations per Full-Time Student $7,735 $8,636
Tax Revenue Per Full-Time Student Allocated to Higher Education $15,037 $15,276
Adults Over 25 With an Associate Degree 6.6% 8.5%
Adults Over 25 With a Bachelor's Degree 24.8% 19.8%
Adults Over 25 With a Graduate Degree or Higher 15.9% 12.4%

Sources: NCES, SHEEO, U.S. Census ACS

Accreditation for New Jersey Schools

The best cybersecurity schools in and outside of New Jersey hold accreditation. Accredited universities in the U.S. voluntarily undergo an independent review process to demonstrate they meet quality standards.

There are two types of accreditation: regional and national. Regional accreditation is more common and respected than the national form. Attending a regionally accredited school makes it easier for students to receive financial aid, transfer credits, and qualify for future education programs and professional certifications.

The Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) is New Jersey's regional accreditation body. The MSCHE evaluates colleges in New Jersey and other nearby states to ensure that they meet specific academic standards. When choosing an online or in-person school in New Jersey, look for MSCHE-accredited institutions.

Online schools located in other states available to New Jersey students may hold accreditation from other regional accreditation bodies.

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How to Select From the Best Cybersecurity Schools in NJ

New Jersey offers some of the best cybersecurity schools, but many factors go into choosing the right college and program for each student. The data below can help you figure out if New Jersey is the right place to start your search for cybersecurity programs.

Below, we cover what to expect from on-campus, online, and hybrid options in New Jersey. We also explain how much you can expect to pay for a cybersecurity degree in the state.

On-Campus Programs

Students can choose from many opportunities to attend traditional, on-campus programs at cybersecurity schools in NJ. The ideal student for this type of learning experience may be someone coming straight from high school. In-person programs offer structure and more chances to interact with instructors and peers than the typical online learning environment.

Online Programs

Some of the best schools for cybersecurity offer online programs. Distance learning offers greater flexibility and convenience than most in-person programs. Students who want to keep working while in school or who have other personal responsibilities to work around may prefer online programs.

Hybrid Programs

Some cybersecurity schools in NJ may offer hybrid degrees. Unlike a fully online learning experience, hybrid programs include some in-person requirements. Hybrid degrees may offer the best of both worlds for students who do not want to choose a completely online or completely in-person program.

Explore rankings for top cybersecurity programs online and in person

Paying for Your Cybersecurity Degree

Financing options for the best cybersecurity schools in NJ include student loans, grants, fellowships, and scholarships. As the gold standard of financial aid, scholarships do not require repayment. Organizations award scholarships based on academic merit, financial need, and demographics.

Grants, usually awarded based on financial need, also do not require repayment. The federal government and private institutions offer student loans that can help pay for degrees. Fellowships are usually available at the graduate level and include a paid position that provides students with professional development opportunities.

In-State Versus Out-of-State Tuition

Tuition is not cheap in New Jersey, but students who live in the state pay significantly less at public two-year and four-year higher education institutions than non-residents. Unfortunately, tuition generally costs more here than in most other states.

Residents pay more than the national average to attend cybersecurity schools in NJ. Non-residents pay more than the national average for every type of school except public two-year colleges, where they pay slightly less. New Jersey does not participate in any state tuition reciprocity agreements.

New Jersey's Cost of Living

The cost of living in the U.S. varies significantly from state to state. New Jersey is more expensive to live in than the average state. New Jersey's cost of living index score of 125.1 means that New Jerseans pay about 25% more overall just to afford basic needs like housing, healthcare, and food.

Students should consider New Jersey's cost of living when deciding whether or not to pursue a degree or employment here.

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Careers for Graduates of Cybersecurity Schools in NJ

Graduates from the best schools for cybersecurity in New Jersey can pursue high-paying career opportunities in tech. New Jersey ranks solidly in the middle of all states in rankings of its business environment and employment.

The state counts 6.2% of its workforce in the tech sector, marking it one of the top places for tech workers in the U.S. Employment levels for cybersecurity and systems engineers rank second behind software jobs in New Jersey tech occupations. The economic impact of the tech industry amounts to $48 billion, or 8% of the total economy.

Other major industries in the state that require workers with cybersecurity degrees include financial services, clean energy, and manufacturing. Below, we explore potential cybersecurity careers, employment trends, and employers in New Jersey.

Select Cybersecurity Careers in New Jersey

Information Security Analyst

Information security analysts safeguard organizations' computer systems and networks. Typical duties include researching security trends, monitoring systems for vulnerabilities, and making security recommendations. These analysts need at least a bachelor's degree in cybersecurity or a related field.

Salary for Information Security Analysts in New Jersey: $123,610

Job Outlook in New Jersey (2020-30): +22.4%

IT Security Manager

IT security managers oversee companies' large-scale issues of computer security. Their day-to-day activities vary depending on where they work but may include supervising IT teams, creating IT security best practices, and managing budgets.

The BLS does not collect specific job data for IT security managers, instead grouping careers to describe cybersecurity positions. The agency projects a 7.2% job growth rate between 2020 and 2030 in New Jersey for computer and information systems managers, a similar career.

Salary for IT Security Managers in the U.S.: $119,340

Computer Forensics Analyst

Computer forensics analysts investigate digital sources for forensic evidence. They filter through large quantities of data to find patterns, recover information, and answer questions. These analysts typically need a bachelor's degree in cybersecurity, computer science, or a related field.

The BLS does not offer specific data for computer forensics analysts, instead grouping careers to describe cybersecurity positions. The agency projects a 22.4% job growth rate in New Jersey between 2020 and 2030 for information security analysts, a career similar to computer forensics analysts.

Salary for Information Security Analysts in the U.S.: $74,800

Below, we describe employment trends for other popular cybersecurity jobs in New Jersey.

New Jersey Employment Trends

Projected Job Growth for Computer Hardware Engineers, Computer Network Architects, and Software Developers, Applications
Year State National
Computer Hardware Engineers
2018 Employment 1,030 64,400
2028 Projected Employment 1,090 68,400
Projected Job Growth, 2018-28 +5.8% +6.2%
Computer Network Architects
2018 Employment 5,150 159,300
2028 Projected Employment 5,020 167,700
Projected Job Growth, 2018-28 -2.5% +5.3%
Software Developers, Applications
2018 Employment 48,110 944,200
2028 Projected Employment 57,100 1,185,700
Projected Job Growth, 2018-28 +18.7% +25.6%

Source: Projections Central

Salaries for Cybersecurity and Related Careers, May 2020
Career New Jersey Employment New Jersey Average Annual Salary National Annual Mean Wage
Computer and Information Systems Managers 19,700 $189,540 $162,930
Computer Hardware Engineers 1,970 $128,900 $136,230
Computer Network Architects 6,700 $139,990 $120,650
Computer Network Support Specialists 4,910 $90,350 $71,350
Computer Programmers 6,520 $107,480 $96,650
Computer Systems Analysts 13,010 $111,140 $102,210
Information Security Analysts 5,450 $123,610 $113,270
Network and Computer Systems Administrators 10,170 $108,860 $91,250
Software Developers 46,630 $124,100 $120,990
Web Developers 1,830 $86,730 $81,320

Source: BLS OES

Cybersecurity professionals in New Jersey typically earn higher salaries than the national average for the same positions. In some cases, the higher pay is tens of thousands more per year. However, Projections Central reports slower-than-average projected job growth rates in New Jersey for software developers, computer network architects, and computer hardware engineers.

High-paying cybersecurity careers in New Jersey include software developer, network and computer systems administrator, computer and information systems manager, and computer network support specialist.

Cybersecurity Employers in New Jersey

Explore some of the top cybersecurity employers in New Jersey below.

Verizon Communications: Verizon Communications employs hundreds of cybersecurity professionals in roles like senior cybersecurity engineer, cybersecurity project manager, cybersecurity analyst, and cybersecurity consultant. The company's operational headquarters, where more than 2,000 employees work in a massive complex, is located in Basking Ridge, New Jersey.

AT&T Network Security: AT&T Network Security in New Jersey hires cybersecurity professionals for positions like cybersecurity consultant in incident response and forensics, principal cybersecurity developer, and principal cybersecurity architect.

Honeywell International: Honeywell International, a multinational corporation focused on aerospace, performance materials and technology, new technologies, and solutions in safety and productivity, maintains a large presence in Morris Plains, New Jersey. Cybersecurity positions at the company include senior IT security manager, director of information security, and systems engineer.

Professional Cybersecurity Organizations and Resources in New Jersey

Explore our list of organizations for professions in cyber in NJ below.

The (ISC)² New Jersey chapter provides a place for members to gain leadership skills, exchange ideas, and network with other information security professionals. Members also receive access to educational resources and programs. The New Jersey ISSA chapter connects cybersecurity leaders in the state and around the world. The group organizes professional development activities and chapter meetings. OWASP Princeton, New Jersey, furthers student opportunities in cybersecurity. The organization coordinates a mentorship program, offers networking events, and provides a forum for discussion of current issues in the field.

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Best Schools for Cybersecurity Bachelor's Programs in New Jersey

Explore our ranking of the best cybersecurity schools for bachelor's programs in New Jersey for 2022. Check out the link below to learn how we rank postsecondary institutions.

Best Schools for Cybersecurity Master's Programs in New Jersey

Discover the best cybersecurity schools for master's programs in New Jersey for 2022. Our methodology page explains our criteria for ranking colleges.

Questions About Cybersecurity in New Jersey

Are there cybersecurity schools near me in New Jersey?

Yes. New Jersey offers some of the best cybersecurity schools in the country. Consult our ranked lists of cybersecurity schools in NJ at the bachelor's and master's degree levels above.

Is cybersecurity a good career in New Jersey?

Yes — it can be. Cybersecurity careers in New Jersey offer higher salaries than cybersecurity professionals earn for the same jobs in other states.

Is going to college for cybersecurity worth it?

Due to the increasing demand for skilled IT security professionals, attending college for cybersecurity can pay off. Graduates can apply for various in-demand positions and earn higher-than-average salaries.

What cybersecurity jobs are in New Jersey?

New Jersey offers cybersecurity jobs in the tech, financial services, clean energy, and manufacturing industries. Potential positions include information security analyst, IT security manager, and computer forensics analyst.

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