College holds cyber security camp funded by Wall Street West
The Wall Street West project was designed to provide New York financial companies a place to back up data during a crisis, such as the attacks Sept. 11, 2001. If another catastrophe occurs in New York City, a huge reserve of data could potentially be lost. Under the Wall Street West initiative, financial information would be transmitted to Pennsylvania through fiber-optic lines.
According to Dr. Abdullah Konak, Assistant Professor of Information Sciences and Technology at Penn State Berks, a study in the nine-county Wall Street West region found that only six percent of high school students were interested in jobs in information technology. The camp is offered to help cultivate interest in the information technology field among high school students.
This is the second year that the Cyber Security Camp will be offered at Penn State Berks. Developed by Konak, the camp exposes students to careers in computer security, particularly in the financial services industry.
If students get early experience with computers, they might develop an interest in the sort of jobs that Wall Street West would create, Konak said. He also hopes to train local high school teachers to use the technology in their classrooms.
"There is a huge demand for information-security specialists," he said. "Hopefully, we will increase the students' interest in this area."
Penn State Berks aims to help achieve this goal by "reaching out to regional high schools, creating collaborations and transferring educational technology between the higher education institutions in the region, and professional development in information assurance and risk analysis education," said Walt Fullam, Director of Continuing Education at Penn State Berks. "Penn State Berks is uniquely positioned to serve this niche."
The Wall Street West partnership, based in Bethlehem, awarded grants to develop programming to boost the financial-services workforce in northeastern Pennsylvania. For more information, visit berks.psu.edu/ce.