GRAND RAPIDS – Davenport University is expanding its employment guarantee program to students earning a cyber defense degree. The Davenport University Employment Guarantee assures students they will find employment within six months of graduating or they earn an additional 48 credits tuition-free.

“We have an obligation in higher education that the investment our students make in their education is rewarded with a successful career,” said Dr. Richard Pappas, President of Davenport University. “Davenport’s guarantee program is just that. It’s a reflection of our confidence and our commitment to students that the education they’ll earn at our university will prepare them to become the nurses, business professionals, computer scientists and cyber defense experts of the future.”  

Davenport’s employment guarantee, introduced in 2014 with accounting, was the first program of its kind. It is currently available to more than 1,100 students enrolled in accounting, nursing, network management and security, computer information systems, computer science programs and now cyber defense.

 To be eligible, students must maintain a 3.0 GPA in their major and overall, complete an internship and other experiential learning or leadership components, be eligible for legal employment in the U.S., and conduct a thorough, documented job search. Qualified graduates unable to find employment may receive up to three additional semesters – up to 48 credits total – of tuition-free instruction, with students responsible for fees and books. The additional courses, worth up to nearly $37,000, helps most students earn a second major free of charge.

“With the launch of the cyber defense guarantee, we are also looking to draw more students into the ever-expanding career opportunities within cybersecurity,” adds Pappas.

In the last year, the United States has seen an 11 percent increase in security breaches according to the 2019 Cybercrime Study conducted by Accenture. As a result, the cybersecurity and defense career opportunities continue to grow. In fact, the new Cyber Defense Employment Guarantee comes at a time when experts estimate nearly 300,000 cybersecurity jobs will remain unfilled across the country.

Davenport University was recently awarded a five-year, $4M grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to train and educate the nation’s next generation of cybersecurity experts as part of their CyberCorps® Scholarship for Service program.

Since 2011, Davenport University has been designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CDE) by the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) – one of only nine schools in Michigan. In addition, Davenport University is one of only 16 institutions nationally to be recognized as a Center of Digital Forensics Academic Excellence (CDFAE) by the Department of Defense Cyber Crime Center (DC3).

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