STEM courses added this semester

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Rakshak Adhikari

Staff Writer

Starting this fall, the College of Art and Sciences will offer courses in two new fields of study: cyber security and electronic engineering technology (EET).

While the cyber security certificate program will be offered through the Department of Computer Science, students will still take a few related classes through the Department of Criminal Justice.

According to Jiling “Bill” Zhong, the chair of the Department of Computer Science, 10 students have already signed up for the cyber security program, which was approved in June. The Computer Science Department has already hired a faculty member to teach the classes and, in the near future, will be building a lab for these same classes. 

“Cyber security majors are highly sought after by a large variety of institutions,” Zhong said. “Banks, retailers, schools and all other organizations that have a network and a database are becoming more aware of the threats of cyber-attacks and to up the game, they need experts.”

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics states the median salary to be $95,510 for information security analysts, a job that often seeks cyber security professionals.

The EET courses are offered through the Department of Chemistry and Physics. According to Govind Menon, chair of the department and director of the School of Science and Technology, the EET program is highly applied and is more vocational compared to a traditional electronic engineering degree. 

“With an EET degree you will work not in a (research and development) setup but in a plant that actually assembles electronic equipment,” Menon said.

While the program has officially started this semester, only the prerequisite classes in physics and calculus are currently offered. The electronics classes will begin next fall in 2019.

 According to Menon, the department is looking to hire new faculty members and will be constructing two labs for the new field. 

Menon said the department had been in contact with Lockheed Martin, the aerospace and defense technology company, which has expressed interest in supporting the construction of labs. The department is also actively considering reaching out to other technology companies like Airbus and Hyundai for placement and internships.

“The Electronic Engineering Technology is for anyone who wants to pursue an academic degree strong in scientific content but highly focused on application,” Menon said.

The EET program is not acccredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET)  because it is brand new.

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