DHS Announces Cybersecurity Internship Program
For cybersecurity students who are attending or have just completed college and graduate school, the Department of Homeland Security has launched its first cybersecurity internship programs, aimed at hiring qualified IT security professionals.
"We are looking to build a cybersecurity workforce from the ground up, rather than hire those already trained," says Nicole Dean, Deputy Director of the National Cyber Security Division at DHS. "We are looking to hire the best and the brightest and provide them the opportunity to grow professionally."
Three Programs Available
DHS internship programs are defined across three levels:
Key take-aways for students include the opportunity to grow professionally and get hands-on training during the internship programs, as well as to understand how broad and rapidly growing the cybersecurity field is.
"It is an opportunity to plan for the future, learn the cutting-edge technologies used in government, and develop a career in combating cyber terrorism," says Keri Nusbaum, Director of Recruitment and Development at DHS.
In addition, students through rotational assignments will get deeper insight into the functioning and coordination efforts that DHS has, with Department of Defense and the intelligence community, as well as the private sector.
"They will get first-hand exposure on how cyber issues are connected and managed at such a large scale," Nusbaum says.
The students will be hired from all top U.S. schools that are recognized as accredited universities. They do not have to attend a center of academic excellence designated by the National Security Agency and DHS.
Students must meet these requirements:
This year is the first for the internship programs, and interest has been strong, says Dean. However, DHS is starting small in an effort to refine the program first, and is currently looking to hire only eight graduate students this summer for the Emerging Leaders in Cybersecurity Fellowship program. Also, DHS has jump-started the Cybersecurity Internship program by selecting current students to participate in a 10-week summer internship. These individuals, depending on performance, will be eligible to participate in the Secretary's Honors Program upon graduation.
"We expect to grow the program at all levels five-fold over the next three years," Dean says.
Prospective candidates should visit the DHS website for instructions on how to apply and get more information on application deadlines. DHS has begun recruiting for summer 2012.
"SECNAP conducted a very thorough GLBA‐focused audit and left no stone unturned. They even noticed physical security issues, such as when an employee had temporarily propped open a door to one of our computer equipment storage rooms."