Welcome to the Cybersecurity Program

About Us

Starting in the Fall 2022 semester, Tarleton State University offers a Bachelor of Science degree in Cybersecurity (CYSE). Our new CYSE program is designed to develop the top skills and attributes required by employers in the Cybersecurity area:

  • Problem-solving skills
  • Curiosity and eagerness to learn
  • Communication skills
  • Knowledge of basic and advanced cyber concepts
  • Strategic thinking

Highlights of the courses taught in the new Cybersecurity program:

  • Fundamental computer science and data science content: programming, data structures, algorithms, computer architecture, operating systems, databases, computer networks.
  • Specialized cybersecurity content: principles of cybersecurity, number theory, cryptography, machine learning, software security, computer forensics, hacking, network security, global cybersecurity, capstone project.

The CSEE department and the new Cybersecurity program are housed in the state-of-the-art Engineering building, that opened in August 2019 on Tarleton’s Stephenville campus. The building is a 97,800 square feet, $54 million facility, with extensive lab space and equipment, including the following that will directly support the Cybersecurity program:

  • Two dedicated Networks labs
  • Circuits and Electronics lab
  • Robotics and Automation lab
  • Project Build Area for student projects
  • Capstone classroom with a presentation area, storage and collaborative project workspace
  • General-purpose Research lab with equipment, storage and build space
  • Six general-purpose computer labs with 24 workstations each
  • Three lecture rooms with 50 seats each
  • 12 faculty offices + reception area

(Facilities are shared with the other programs in the department, and partially with the existing programs in Civil, Mechanical and Environmental engineering.)

A virtual tour of the new building can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mgAfYuSgdPQ.

Video of the actual building is included here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_q3fRPJwas&t=64s.

Salary and job market prospects:

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), jobs for cybersecurity professionals (BLS calls this category Information Security Analyst) will grow by 33% in the decade 2020-30, which is much faster than the average of all US jobs (4%), and even faster than computer occupations in general (11%), resulting in the addition of 47,100 jobs nation-wide. Demand for cybersecurity professionals is expected to be very high, as they will be needed to create innovative solutions to prevent hackers from stealing critical information or causing problems for computer networks. This is currently the 10th fastest growing occupation in the US. Median pay reported by BLS for all levels of cybersecurity professionals was $103,590 in 2020, which is substantially higher than the $91,250 of the Computer and Information Technology field in general, which in turn is much higher than the $41,950 of all fields. 

  • At the state level, Texas has the second highest employment in cybersecurity (second only to N. Virginia/DC), and it also in the top quartile of pay for this occupation.
  • At the metropolitan area level, the Dallas-Ft. Worth-Arlington area has the third highest employment level for cybersecurity occupations.
  • In March 2022, LinkedIn Jobs is listing 124,635 open cybersecurity positions in United States, and Cyberseek.org estimates almost 600,000 openings nation-wide (up from 500,000 last year).
  • The latest (ISC)2 report shows that the US has the largest population of cybersecurity professionals, estimated at 1,142,462 (up 30% from 879,157 in 2020), but it is also in the US that the largest cybersecurity gap exists, estimated at 377,000 (up from 359,236 in 2020).
  • The demand for cybersecurity professionals comes after large and small organizations alike have watched the damage caused by major hacking attacks in recent history. Cybercrime as a whole has increased by 600% since the beginning of the global pandemic. 
  • Moreover, it is projected that cybersecurity jobs will be some of the key roles that drive the post-pandemic job recovery over the next five years.