This week, Gov. Ron DeSantis and state Education Commissioner Manny Diaz announced $15.6 million to expand cybersecurity and IT training in Florida.
DeSantis has called for more efforts Florida to make the best state in the nation for workforce education by 2030. The funding is through a joint endeavor of the Florida Department of Education and the Florida Center for Cybersecurity to inspire and prepare more students to pursue fulfilling and lucrative careers in cybersecurity/information technology while helping address a national skills shortage in these areas. The 24 projects that will be funded through this $15.6 million are anticipated to train 27,000 Florida students over the next year.
“We will continue to invest in ensuring Florida’s high schools and colleges offer programs that allow students to immediately enter the workforce with the ability to secure high-paying jobs,” said DeSantis. “This funding will not only advance the educational opportunities for Florida students seeking employment in this critical field, but will also create a safer and more stable cyberspace for our future generations.”
Cybersecurity is one of the fastest-growing and most lucrative fields in the United States. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, it is expected to grow by 33 percent in the next decade, which is “much faster than average.” With a median pay in six figures, students can get high-paying jobs right out of high school.
“In Florida, Governor DeSantis has prioritized cybersecurity, providing resources to our institutions to meet the demand of cybersecurity professionals,” said Diaz. “Raising awareness and interest in cybersecurity at the K-12 and postsecondary levels is crucial to meet the needs of businesses across Florida and create pathways for students to gain employment with a sustainable salary right after high school.”
This initiative is built on the state’s CTE audit and implementation of HB 1507 to shift K-12 and postsecondary course offerings in a manner that phases out low-demand, low-wage courses and introduces more high-demand, high-wage courses and stackable credentials and pathways that best align Florida’s K-12 and postsecondary systems to workforce demands.
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