Join the cybersecurity workforce, no degree required

Google Career Certificates expand, now offering training in one of the most in-demand fields

Cyber attacks are on the rise – up nearly 40% in the past year alone. The attacks have been on infrastructure, government agencies, big and small companies, and individuals.

That’s made cybersecurity professional one of the fastest-growing, in-demand careers. Unfortunately, at this point, according to employers, there are not enough people with the needed skills to fill the more than 750,000 current open jobs in this country.

To help meet that demand, Google has expanded its Google Career Certificate program to include a new Cybersecurity Certificate.

No degree or experience is required to enroll.

Lisa Gevelber is the founder of Grow with Google.

“One of our most important programs is the Google Career Certificate program. It was based on the belief that so many people were being locked out of good jobs just because they didn’t have the right credential, and that credential, traditionally, has been a college degree,” she explains.

Lisa Gevelber, founder, Grow with Google (Photo: Google)

“We wanted to make sure that the opportunities created by technology were truly available to everyone, and we wanted to create a pathway for people, whether they had a college degree or not, to get into an in-demand high growing field. And that’s why we created the Google Career Certificate program.”

Gevelber tells me that the Google Career Certificate program now has six certificates from which to choose.

She says, “The data is clear: we must create more pathways for people to enter the cybersecurity field and build a lasting career. Google is combining our industry-leading expertise in cybersecurity with our proven approach to training people for in-demand jobs to help create a solution.

“The Google Cybersecurity Certificate will help businesses fill cybersecurity roles and enable people to earn an industry-recognized credential that will qualify them for a great job,” Gevelber adds.

The training for the certificate was designed by Google cybersecurity experts and has been vetted by national employers. Certification can be completed online in less than six months, even studying just ten hours a week.

The training prepares workers for entry-level jobs such as cybersecurity analysts and information security analysts. The median entry-level salary in the field is more than $100,000. The cost is about $49 a month and the training is online via Coursera.

Here is some of what the course entails, according to Google.

“Google’s Cybersecurity Certificate will prepare people for entry-level roles by training them to identify common cyber risks, threats and vulnerabilities, as well as how to mitigate them by protecting networks, devices, people, and data from unauthorized access and cyber attacks.

“Learners will get hands-on experience using Python, Linux, and an array of security programs including Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) tools. The program will also prepare people for the CompTIA Security+ exam, the industry leading certification for cybersecurity roles – they will earn a dual credential when they complete both.”

“If you want to create economic opportunity for people – which is really what the Grow with Google program is about – you have to work with the ecosystem. So, in the five career fields that we teach in the Google Career Certificate program, there are two million open jobs in our country right now. Employers are super eager to find people who have these skills,” Gevelber explains.

All six of the certificates are in high-growth fields and Google works directly with employers to ensure there are jobs available to the job seekers. The employer consortium includes more than 150 companies such as American Express, Colgate-Palmolive, T-Mobile, Walmart, and Google, itself.

“There’s so much demand for people to have really high-quality digital skills. Employers have become more and more open, thankfully, to people of all different backgrounds who bring those skills. Our certificate program is really rigorous – you have to get an 80% or higher on all the required assessments in order to earn the certificate. Employers get that, and, as we continue to teach these in-demand skills, employers are really eager to hire these graduates,” says Gevelber.

Google is partnering with nonprofits including Hiring our Heroes, Cyversity, Raices Cyber, and Women in CyberSecurity (WiCyS) to offer the Google Cybersecurity Certificate to Black, Latino, veteran, and female job seekers.

Additionally, educational institutions including Purdue University, the University of Texas System, and Northern Virginia Community College will offer the new certificate to students.