New Degree Approved in Cybersecurity at Undergraduate Level

January 19, 2016

Saint Leo University has developed a new undergraduate degree program in the growing field of cybersecurity, and will begin accepting students this year.

The Bachelor of Science in cybersecurity program begins in Fall Semester 2016, and courses will be offered at University Campus and online. In addition to students just starting their college careers, potential transfer students from other institutions may also apply for admission to the 121-credit program. Current Saint Leo students in their first years of study have the option of applying to the program as well, noted Dr. Derek Mohammed, chair of the Department of Computer Science and Information Systems.

Saint Leo already offers a Master of Science in cybersecurity, and a Bachelor of Science in computer science, in both classroom settings and online.

The four-year degree program in cybersecurity will afford students the valuable foundation of Saint Leo’s liberal arts program along with a technically rigorous, hands-on curriculum in cybersecurity. All courses are tied to the university’s Catholic Benedictine values, which provide a strong ethical base for students of any faith affiliation, or no faith affiliation.

Employment opportunities for information security analysts and cybersecurity specialists are expected to grow dramatically in the coming decade. A broad variety of organizations from corporations to government agencies need to protect their records and client data from intrusion, theft, and damage. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, job growth in areas related to cybersecurity is expected to exceed 36.5 percent in the next 10 years.

Saint Leo’s new cybersecurity program actually has several courses in common with the existing bachelor’s degree program in computer science. One distinction is that the computer science degree is best-suited for those who want to create products or develop software.

The new program requires six courses specific to cybersecurity, plus two undergraduate courses from Saint Leo’s Criminal Justice Department. In addition, the new cybersecurity degree will fulfill the undergraduate requirements set by the National Security Agency for its certification standards. Graduates will be prepared for careers developing security products or programming security applications, as well as working as cybersecurity analysts, penetration testers, vulnerability analysts, or cyber-legal analysts.

Saint Leo computer-related programs are based at the university’s Donald R. Tapia School of Business. The faculty are highly qualified and experienced and teach using state-of-the-art computing facilities and tools. Saint Leo also offers a Bachelor of Science in computer information systems for those students interested in careers managing computer, network, and hardware and software purchases and facilities.

For more information, please contact Dr. Derek Mohammed at (352) 588-8413, or by email at