DURHAM – North Carolina Central University is being added to IBM’s growing list of Cybersecurity Leadership Centers as part of a drive to boost cybersecurity jobs training.

NCCU was added to the growing list of 20 centers at Historically Black College and Universities in an announcement made Wednesday as part of the National HBCU Week Conference.

North Carolina A&T was among the first six HBCUs announced in May. 

IBM says there are 500,000 unfilled cybersecurity jobs in the U.S.

“Collaborations between academia and the private sector can help students prepare for success. That’s especially true for HBCUs because their mission is so vital,” said Justina Nixon-Saintil, Vice President, IBM Corporate Social Responsibility and ESG. “The Cybersecurity Leadership Centers we’re co-creating with Historically Black College and Universities epitomize our commitment to the Black community and STEM education; it also builds on our pledge to train 150,000 people in cybersecurity over three years.”

NC A&T is among six IBM picks for cybersecurity centers

The full list of centers, including those announced in May, are:

  • Alabama – Alabama A&M University, Talladega College, Tuskegee University 
  • Florida – Edward Waters University, Florida A&M University 
  • Georgia – Albany State University, Clark Atlanta University* 
  • Louisiana – Grambling State University, Southern University System*, Xavier University of LA* 
  • Maryland – Bowie State University, Morgan State University* 
  • Mississippi – Alcorn State University 
  • North Carolina – North Carolina A&T State University*, North Carolina Central University 
  • South Carolina – South Carolina State University*, Voorhees University 
  • Texas – Texas Southern University 
  • Virginia – Norfolk State University 
  • West Virginia – West Virginia State University  

IBM says it will provide each HCBU:

  • Cybersecurity curricula: IBM will develop for each participating HBCU, a customized IBM Security Learning Academy portal – an IBM client offering – including courses designed to help the university enhance its cybersecurity education portfolio. In addition, IBM will continue to give access to IBM SkillsBuild. 
  • Immersive learning experience: Faculty and students of participating HBCUs will have an opportunity to benefit from IBM Security’s Command Center, through which they can experience a highly realistic, simulated cyberattack, designed to prepare them and train them on response techniques. Moreover, HBCUs’ faculty will have access to consultation sessions with IBM technical personnel on cybersecurity. 
  • Software: Multiple IBM Security premier enterprise security products hosted in the IBM Cloud.
  • Professional development: Forums to exchange best practices, learn from IBM experts, and discover IBM internships and job openings.