Best Cyber Security Degrees for Military Veterans Going Back to School Online

Best Cyber Security Degrees for Military Veterans Going Back to School Online

Considering going back to school for a cyber security degree? If you’re a military veteran making the transition to civilian life, choosing the right online cyber security program is key.

With hacking and data breaches on the rise, professionals with cyber security skills are in high demand. The field is growing rapidly too – by 2026 there will be over 300,000 more cyber security jobs needing to be filled.

That makes now a prime time for military veterans to earn an online cyber security degree. Your existing technical training makes you an ideal fit for the rigor of these programs. And cyber security roles value the leadership, discipline and problem-solving abilities that the military instills.

However, not all online cyber security degrees are created equal. As a veteran, you want a program designed specifically to align with military experience. One that also offers support to former service members.

To help you pick the best cyber security program for your needs, I’ve ranked the top 5 online degrees for military veterans. I evaluated program curriculum, school resources for veterans, and graduate outcomes among other factors to assemble this list.

Let’s get started! Here are my picks for the 5 finest online cyber security degrees for military veterans:

5 Best Cyber Security Degrees for Military Veterans Online

#1. University of Maryland Global Campus

The University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC) tops this list for its Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity program. What really makes it stand out for military students are all the veterans resources offered.

Over half of UMGC’s student body comes from a military background. So they go above and beyond to cater to veteran needs. Resources include military tuition assistance, a Veteran and Military Services Center, connections to veteran support groups, veteran scholarships and more.

Additionally, UMGC’s cybersecurity program closely aligns with Department of Defense and NSA guidelines. Classes cover the latest techniques and developments in the field like ethical hacking, risk management and IT governance. Hands-on labs give you critical experience in security tools as well.

The program is available 100% online. So military veterans can complete their degree uninterrupted from anywhere in the world.

UMGC also offers flexible credit options to make earning your cybersecurity degree faster. You can transfer in your military training for college credit through their Partnership Degree Initiative. Or take advantage of credit by examination to have your work and life experiences count.

With small classes, outstanding veteran support and NSA-aligned curriculum, UMGC is a top choice for military veterans pursuing cyber security.

#2. Arizona State University

Through its Online Master of Science program in Cybersecurity (MCS), Arizona State University provides extensive cyber security education for military students.

ASU is a top-ranked national university well-known for innovation. This Master’s of Cybersecurity continues that leading-edge approach. The program curriculum closely matches the critical cyber security topic areas laid out by the Joint Task Force on Cybersecurity Education. Subject matter aligns with many DoD cyber workforce frameworks too.

What also makes Arizona State a premier pick are all the services provided to military-connected learners. ASU offers enrolled veterans flexible learning options, application fee waivers, support groups and counseling assistance among other resources.

The MCS degree itself delivers skills central to cyber security like secure coding, ethical hacking, risk management and intelligence. The program structure allows for customization as well based on your background and interests.

Classes also involve working directly with industry partners through funded research projects. This experiential learning provides students hands-on experience solving real cyber challenges major corporations face today.

With its relevant curriculum, emphasis on hands-on learning, and abundance of assistance for veteran students, ASU is a terrific choice for earning an advanced cyber security degree.

#3. Dakota State University

The next university on this top 5 list is Dakota State University. Its Master of Science in Cyber Operations specifically caters to military veterans pursuing cyber security leadership roles.

DSU designed this Master’s program based on feedback from cyber professionals in the military and government. The curriculum integrates cutting-edge theory with practical application in subjects including cryptography, penetration testing, security policy development, risk management and more.

Classes deliver flexibility for working veterans too. The M.S. in Cyber Operations degree can be completed entirely online in 1-2 years.

Dakota State also has a long history of educating military members in technology degree programs. So they offer specialized support for veterans like military discounts, advising services and network connections to government agencies/contractors.

The program’s blend of technical depth and flexibility makes it an excellent choice if you’re a military veteran aiming for a leadership position in cyber security operations.

#4. Norwich University

Norwich University in Vermont offers both online cyber security Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees fit for military veterans. It earns a spot on this top cyber security colleges list for good reason.

Norwich has been educating future military leaders since 1819. So it’s deeply familiar with the unique needs and experiences of veterans. These military roots (along with an acclaimed cybersecurity program) make Norwich very popular for veteran applicants.

In particular, the school’s Master of Science in Cybersecurity program closely aligns with cyber security skills required across military branches and government agencies. Some core focus areas include threat assessment, information assurance, security architecture, policy and governance.

Students also complete two final projects where they develop solutions that address cyber challenges faced by the military or public sector. This ensures graduates can make an immediate impact in security roles across defense, healthcare, finance and other industries.

As a military-friendly school with premier cyber security education, Norwich deserves its place among the best online degrees for veterans in the field.

#5 Dakota State University

Finally, Dakota State University rounds out the list by offering both quality cyber security Bachelor’s and Master’s programs specifically for military members.

DSU has worked directly with branches of the military for years to develop curriculum relevant to defense cyber operations. Its undergraduate Network and Security Administration program in particular trains students in skills like encryption methods, vulnerability assessments, secure system administration and more.

So military veterans can leverage this background to seamlessly transition into government cyber security roles after graduation. DSU also assists veteran students through initiatives like its Veterans Office, enrollment coaches and dedicated advisors.

Given Dakota State’s deep military relationships and highly-relevant cybersecurity degrees for DoD skills, it’s an excellent option for service members aiming for cyber security careers.

Conclusion

Now You’re Ready to Pick the Best Online Cyber Security Program for You!

Earning a quality cyber security degree tailored to veterans is the perfect way to springboard post-military careers in IT security. I hope this list of top 5 cyber security programs for military veterans helps you discover the ideal school for reaching your goals!

Remember to consider factors like flexible online options, veterans assistance programs, affordability through GI Bill funding, and hands-on curriculum when choosing a degree program. Finding one that checks all those boxes will set you up for cyber security success after your military service.

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