US tackles growing cyber workforce demand with new national strategy

The US has released a national strategy to transform education and strengthen the workforce to meet the growing demand for cyber professionals.

On July 31st, The Biden-Harris administration announced the National Cyber Workforce and Education Strategy (NCWES) to spread cyber literacy and meet the growing demand for skilled cybersecurity professionals.

According to the press release, the country faces challenges in the sector as there are hundreds of thousands of vacant cyber jobs and an insufficiently diverse workforce to fill them. Furthermore, there’s a gap in accessing cyber education and training.

“Strengthening our cyber workforce and equipping every American to realize the benefits of cyberspace is a whole-of-nation endeavor,” said Kemba Eneas Walden, Acting National Cyber Director.

The strategy pushes collaboration between the education sector, governmental institutions, and tech companies – including Microsoft, Google, and Mastercard – and advocates for a skills-based approach to building cyber career pathways.

Focused on building skills

The NCWES will look to implement changes to meet the demand for a skilled workforce in the dynamic technology sector. Firstly, by making education accessible to everyone and equipping Americans with foundational cyber skills.

Lawmakers are determined to improve cyber education from K-12 to higher education, community colleges, and technical schools. This involves expanding competency-based cyber education, investing in educators, and making cyber education more affordable and accessible.

Through collaboration with a wide range of stakeholders, strategy creators will seek to adopt a skills-based approach to recruitment and increase access to cyber jobs for all Americans, including underserved and underrepresented groups.

Finally, the strategy will aim to invest in and strengthen the federal cyber workforce to build a qualified and diverse industry.

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