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Governor and First Lady Visit NCyTE Center at WCC


Bellingham, WA –

Dr. Kathi Hiyane-Brown, President of Whatcom Community College, along with WCC Board of Trustees Chair Rebecca Johnson and John Pedlow, welcomed Governor Jay Inslee and First Lady Trudi Inslee to Whatcom Community College’s National Center for Cybersecurity Training and Education (NCyTE). The Governor’s visit included meeting with cybersecurity faculty and students in a cybersecurity lab, where Corrinne Sande, Director/PI for the NCyTE Center, Computer Science and CIS, delivered an overview of the program and faculty and two students provided a demonstration of a class project focusing on cyberattack defense.

A roundtable discussion followed with the Governor, President, Trustees, Representative Alicia Rule, and local cybersecurity industry professionals including Dan Lewis, CFO, Anvil Corporation; Scott Ritchey, Chief Technology Officer at SPIE, and Bryan Brown, Senior Director of Engineering for Fire Protection at ESO offering feedback on the need not only to address cybersecurity today, but in the future.

Governor Inslee stressed the need to address the shortage of a qualified cybersecurity workforce and faculty locally and on a national scale, and the importance of strong partnerships between government, higher education, and industry.

“I’m proud to see Whatcom Community College receive national recognition for their cybersecurity program”, said Inslee. “WCC graduates are exceptionally qualified to help meet our state’s growing cybersecurity workforce needs.”

“We were delighted to be able to discuss the key challenges that impact colleges’ abilities to produce enough cybersecurity graduates to fill workforce shortages”, stated Corrinne Sande. “Such opportunities are critical to furthering the work of the college and NCyTE’s regional and national cybersecurity initiatives.”

NCyTE was recently designated by the National Science Foundation as the new Advanced Technological Education (ATE) Center for Cybersecurity Education, a result of the college’s nationally recognized leadership in the area of cybersecurity. In August, Dr. Hiyane-Brown, WCC’s President, was invited to attend the White House summit on National Cybersecurity and met with President Biden, members of his cabinet and national security team, and private sector and education leaders. Also in August, the National Science Foundation announced a $7.5 million grant to significantly expand the Center's work in helping colleges train cybersecurity faculty and adopt leading-edge curriculum aimed at fast-tracking students into cybersecurity careers.

"As we have seen recently, the threat to cybersecurity, not only nationally but worldwide, is a persistent and invasive issue across all sectors. Only through strong partnerships can we successfully meet the challenges that will continue to exist”, said Dr. Hiyane-Brown.

Contact: Yvonne Cartwright, Whatcom Community College PIO, (360) 383-3312, [email protected]

About NCyTE: The National Cybersecurity Training & Education (NCyTE) Center is funded by the National Science Foundation. NCyTE's mission is to increase the quantity and quality of the cybersecurity workforce throughout the nation. NCyTE Center is based in Bellingham, WA at Whatcom Community College. For more information visit www.ncyte.net.

About Whatcom: Whatcom Community College in Bellingham, WA is regularly recognized as one of the top community colleges in the nation for student outcomes. The College, a destination for cybersecurity, healthcare and business studies, offers two bachelor of applied science degrees, transfer degrees, career and workforce preparation, online courses, and community education classes. New high school graduates, laid-off workers, seasoned employees, future university students—all students count on WCC to support their academic and career goals. For more information, visit www.whatcom.edu.