How to Prepare Your Homeschooler for a Cybersecurity Career

Teenagers today are growing up in a world that is becoming increasingly powered by technology. Social media, digital games, and cell phones allow teens to quickly access the Internet in a blink of an eye. With this exciting level of innovation, however, come increasing threats to your child’s online safety. Today, cybercriminals are extremely skilled at thwarting secure infrastructures and are constantly thinking of new ways to cause serious damage to not only individuals – but to the nation. In order to keep these widespread threats from occurring, younger generations must be prepared today for the technical world they will live in tomorrow. One way to do this is by teaching your teenager about the importance of online safety and how they can help stop cyber attacks as a future cybersecurity professional.

As a homeschooling parent, you have the option to build a creative and challenging course of study for your child that can heighten their interests in subjects that they may not even be familiar with. If you are interested in preparing your child for the robust career opportunities that exist in cybersecurity, then here are three ways that you can help them learn more.

Get Your Child Into STEM

Science, technology, engineering and math programs all offer the analytical thinking, problem solving, and deductive reasoning skills that are necessary to build a solid foundation for a cybersecurity career. There are currently 31 specialty areas in the cybersecurity field, including operations, forensics, and software engineering. If your child feels threatened by “big numbers” or “scientific reasoning” use logic puzzles and web development programs as fun ways to encourage them to deepen their knowledge in these key subject areas.

Offer Hands-On-Experience

Cybersecurity jobs often involve teamwork. Strengthen your child’s interests and team-building skills by having them participate in extracurricular activities. There are several interactive cyber competitions and camps that exist to help students learn about current security principles and gain strategic skills in a real-world environment. Cybersecurity camps will also help them pick up key technical skills, such as programming or robotics, which will help them perform better in their math courses.

Research Future Degree Programs

Cybersecurity has not been around forever. Because of its increasing importance and the speed of technology, it is a diverse field that continues to evolve. Many colleges have yet to establish cybersecurity programs, particularly liberal arts institutions. If you know that your child may plan on attending a liberal arts college, but you still want them to gain practical skills that could lead them towards a career, have them research information about the following degree programs: Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Information Systems, Information Technology, and Software Engineering. Building their momentum about college and what they may be interested in studying is a good way to set them on a solid career path right out of high school. It will also help you carve out a curriculum that caters to their interests and helps them pick up highly sought after skills.