Department of Computing, Data, & Mathematical Sciences
Cybersecurity & Information Systems
student on laptop in the Billy
Department of Computing, Data, & Mathematical Sciences

Cybersecurity & Information Systems


  • Bachelor of Science
  • Undergraduate

131 credits

required for program

Minor Available

PSEO/Early college online classes

131 credits

131 credits

required for program

Minor Available

PSEO/Early college online classes

Gain an in-depth understanding of how organizations of all types and sizes use cybersecurity to protect their information, computer systems, and personnel. The Cybersecurity major provides you with the tools to effectively provide information assurance in a variety of enterprises such as business, government, and healthcare.

This degree might be right for you if

  • enjoy using technology
  • thrive on learning new techniques and developing new skills
  • relish assisting colleagues in new challenges focused on protecting information

Why study cybersecurity and information systems at Northwestern?

Our program provides training in three broad areas:

  • learning and managing implementation of new technology
  • developing solutions for your firm’s information security needs
  • providing a secure environment for your organization

Designed to meet curricular learning outcomes set by the National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education, our Cybersecurity major combines content in cybersecurity with quality courses in Information Systems. With five highly qualified professors in the Computing, Data, and Mathematics department, we are committed to providing a well-rounded learning experience for the undergraduate seeking a career in cybersecurity and information systems. We also offer a study group each spring semester focused on CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional) certification.

Cybersecurity has become a dominant concern across all areas of our lives: business, technology, government, and even non-profit organizations. The media daily contain stories about cyber attacks and underscore the need for educated employees in information security.

The federal government recently announced the need for an additional 500,000 cybersecurity professionals. Microsoft Corporation has committed to spending $20 billion, that’s an increase of 400%, in the next five years to prepare students for a career in cybersecurity. Google, in an effort to secure employees certified in cybersecurity, will spend $10 billion in the next five years training 100,000 students.

Our courses provide the learner with hands-on experience in our data communications hardware facility managing network routers and switches, unique labs designed to challenge both you and your teammate, and off-campus projects at the conclusion of various courses. Our students have designed solutions for numerous Twin City firms including: Medtronic, Andersen Windows, Thrivent Financial, Northwestern Mutual, Caribou Coffee, Scandinavian Design, and Chick-fil-A.

All graduates are employed within three months of commencement and work at a variety of organizations including: FBI, Allianz, United Health, Travelers Insurance, Medtronic, Thrivent, H.B. Fuller, 3M, Abbott Labs, Target, and U.S. Bank.

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Careers in Cybersecurity and Information Systems

There are a variety of career pathways that begin with a degree in cybersecurity and information systems.

What types of work are related to this degree?

  • Digital forensics specialist
  • Computer network defense analyst
  • Exploitation analyst
  • Cyber network engineer
  • Information systems designer
  • Cybersecurity analyst
  • Protocol analyst
  • Systems engineer
  • Database administrator
  • Penetration testing specialist
  • Cyber security architect
  • Incident response analyst
  • Malware analyst
  • Intrusion detection analyst
  • DevSecOps engineer
  • Software developer
  • Security auditor

Who employs people with this degree?

  • Government
  • National Security Agency (NSA)
  • National Institute of Standards and Technology
  • Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency
  • Department of Homeland Security
  • U.S. Military
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
  • State and Local government agencies
  • Software Development firms
  • Computer Consulting organizations
  • Universities and Colleges
  • Healthcare Organizations
  • Telecommunications firms
  • Consulting firms
  • Financial services companies
  • Manufacturers
  • Internet-related companies
  • Computer hardware and software firms

Strategies for success:

  • Adopt an attitude of learning throughout your career. Employers encourage everyone to advance in their career through more education.
  • Seek professional certifications beginning with CISSP, then add specialties in your area of expertise.
  • Attend professional conferences in cybersecurity and information systems. You can learn a great deal through informal conversations with your peers in the industry.
  • Find a mentor through the Career Communities link at the UNW Career Development office. Mentors are UNW alumni who have volunteered to assist undergraduates in understanding the work environment and selecting the right career choice.
  • Meet with your UNW professors and talk about their careers. You will discover they have worked in a variety of jobs including research and development, health care industry research, software development, consulting, and cryptology for the U.S. military.
  • Gain professional experience by working part-time in a job within or closely related to your future career path.
  • Read professional literature related to your chosen career. Contact authors in your field and seek career advice from them.
  • If you plan to be a software developer, spend your free time writing programs that exceed requirements in your programming courses.
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What will I learn?

You will learn to adapt to changing conditions, solve complex problems, and communicate effectively with fellow workers.

Still have questions about this program or how to apply?

Our team is ready with answers!

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