Kentucky Cybersecurity Certificate and Associate's Degree

According to cybersecurity company Seculore Solutions, many cyberattacks have been logged during 2019-2020 against Kentucky’s government, medical and education infrastructure. Some of them include:

  • City of Lexington, Fayette County – October 9, 2020- experienced a cyber hack/data breach in which employee information was risked through a third-party contractor email phishing attack
  • Kentucky Employees’ Health Plan, State of Kentucky – June 4, 2020- 1000 members of the employee health plan were affected when a bad actor used valid logon credentials to access accounts illegally
  • UK HealthCare, Fayette County – September 9, 2020- Blackbaud data breach, no sensitive information was exposed but patients and donors were notified
  • Hardin Memorial Hospital, Hardin County – April 6-8, 2019- hacking and cyberattacks occurred over the weekend; IT systems were affected but processes were repaired and restored
  • University of Kentucky, Fayette County – March 9, 2020 – the college healthcare provider’s network was attacked in a cyberattack, although it is believed no personal information was leaked
  • Hopkins County Schools – June 10, 2019 – a compromised account exposed sensitive information of over 7000 students in a hacking/data breach incident. This resulted in the school board taking measures to make sure all staff is trained on password protection. They also contacted the Kentucky State Police and Department of Education to notify them of the breach.

As you can see, cybersecurity is vital to the sanctity of systems and information all across the state of Kentucky, in a wide variety of industries. If you would like to become involved in the world of cybersecurity in Kentucky, your best bet is to first obtain a certificate or associate degree in the field. Then, you will be in a better position to find a job within cybersecurity, continue your training and education, or both! Keep reading to find out how you can earn your associate degree or certificate in cybersecurity in Kentucky. 

Cybersecurity in the News in Kentucky

A small credit union in Kentucky recently made news when it announced its intention to merge with a larger financial institution due to its inability to keep up with cybersecurity requirements. The Muhlenberg Community Hospital Credit Union, with less than one million dollars in assets and just 442 members, says that it does not have the financial or manpower resources to monitor in the way it should for cybersecurity risks and terrorism activities, as well as provide online services to members or offer the limited services it has been offering. It seeks to merge with Green River Area Federal Credit Union of Owensboro, KY, which has $50.3 million in assets. A meeting will be held on December 21, 2020 to vote on this merger, which needs approval from members. During the first three quarters of 2020, the Muhlenberg Community Hospital Credit Union lost $2200, compared to a $1300 loss during the same period the year before. Its unsecured loans total $120,000. 

Garnering a Cybersecurity Education in Kentucky

Jobs in Kentucky that you might be able to obtain with an associate degree or certificate in cybersecurity include, but are not limited to:

  • Information Technology Cybersecurity Specialist – US Department of Energy, Paducah
  • Security Analyst – Allied Universal, Louisville
  • IT Security Analyst, Intermediate – Baptist Health System, Louisville
  • Cybersecurity Consultant, Application Security, DevSecOps – EY, Frankfort
  • IT Security Analyst – LG&E and KU Energy, Louisville
  • IT Security Consultant – Kforce Technology, Louisville
  • Telecommute Security Research Engineer- Virtual Vocations/Learn4Good, Louisville
  • Network Security Engineer (remote)- Humana, Kentucky
  • Cyber Security Analyst – Odyssey Systems, Lexington
  • Principal Data Security Specialist – SAIC, Bagdad 

Associate Cybersecurity Degrees in Kentucky

Examples of titles of cybersecurity associate degrees in Kentucky include:

  • Associate of Science in Cybersecurity
  • Associate of Applied Science in Computer & Information Technologies
  • Associate of Science in Information Technology 

Cybersecurity Associate Degree and Certificate Programs in Kentucky

The Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA)  recognizes regional accreditation agencies that accredit colleges and universities throughout the United States, including within Kentucky. When you choose an associate degree or certificate cybersecurity program, make sure that the school that houses the program is accredited by one of these agencies. 

Centers of Academic Excellence (CAE)

In 1999, the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) established  National Centers of Academic Excellence, to recognize the finest cybersecurity degree and certificate programs in the U.S.  

Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education in Kentucky

The following associate degree and certificate programs in Kentucky have been given the designation of Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CD):

  • Bluegrass Community & Technical College – Associate of Applied Science in Computer & Information Technologies with the following tracks available: Business Software and Support Track, Data Center Technologies Track, Geospatial Technologies Track, Informatics Track, Internet Technologies Track, Network Technologies Track, Programming Track, Video Game Design Track

Cybersecurity Center

470 Cooper Drive

Lexington, KY 40506

CAE- Cyber Defense Education- Accredited through 2024

Robert Chirwa, Program Coordinator – [email protected] 

Nunn Drive

Highland Heights, KY 41099

CAE- Cyber Defense Education- Accredited through 2024

Dr. James Walden, Director of Cybersecurity Program 

(859) 572-5571; [email protected] 

  • Owensboro Community & Technical College – 

Associate of Applied Science in Computer and Information Technologies – Information Security Track

Digital Forensics Certificate

Information Security Specialist Certificate

4800 New Hartford Road

Owensboro, KY 42303

CAE- Cyber Defense Education- Accredited through 2024

(270) 686-4400

J.B. Speed School of Engineering

132 Eastern Parkway

Louisville, KY 40292

CAE- Cyber Defense Education- Accredited through 2024

(502) 852-6281; [email protected]   

School of Computer and Information Sciences

649 S. 10th St. Suite C

Williamsburg, KY 40769

CAE- Cyber Defense Education- Accredited through 2022

(606) 539-4372; [email protected] 

Additional Associate Degree and Certificate Programs in Cybersecurity in Kentucky

There are more associate degree and certificate cybersecurity programs in Kentucky, like: 

Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)

School of Mathematics & Computer Science

400 East Main St.

Frankfort, KY 40601

(502) 597-6000; [email protected] 

Kentucky Cybersecurity Associate Degree Program Classes

Although degree programs vary from college to college in Kentucky, classes that you will take are usually fairly uniform, and should include:

  • Introduction to Programming
  • Introduction to Cybersecurity and Information Assurance
  • Forensics I
  • Cybersecurity Threats, Attacks and Defense
  • Principles of Information Security
  • Computer Hardware Fundamentals
  • Computer Network Fundamentals
  • Introduction to Linux
  • Network Infrastructure
  • Computer Security Fundamentals
  • Certified Ethical Hacking

Cybersecurity Certificates in Kentucky

In addition to the cybersecurity certificates listed above, the following certificates in cybersecurity are also offered in Kentucky:

  • Cybersecurity Undergraduate Certificate – Northern Kentucky University 
  • Cybersecurity Administration Certificate – Sullivan University 
  • Cybersecurity Professional Certificate – Sullivan University
  • Cybersecurity Diploma- Sullivan University 

Kentucky Cybersecurity Salaries

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics of the Department of Labor says that as of May 2019, information security analysts working in Kentucky brought home an annual mean wage of $83,390. Across the state, wages were the following:

  • Fayette: $71,120
  • Lexington: $71,120
  • Louisville: $90,100
  • West nonmetro:$76,240