Cybersecurity in Action

  • Vickie McLainEmail author


Most students enrolled in cybersecurity education graduate with an impressive skill set that includes many technical tools. However, when students go into internship for employment, there is not a manual of instructions or assignments for them to follow. In addition, employers always stress the importance of soft skills in finding and keeping a job.

Lake Superior College decided to incorporate all of these skills in a lab funded by the National Security Agency (NSA) as part of the Cybersecurity Workforce Education Act (Fanning, Lake Superior College Receives $240,000 Cybersecurity Workforce Education Grant to Simulate Business and Industry Environments, 2017). The lab includes six mini businesses complete with their own networks, policies, databases, websites, and problems. The students were assigned to businesses as freshman and complete activities that will result in them being hired by a business. They will move through the business completing activities such as setting up the network, hardening the network, troubleshooting, and writing and implementing policies, risk analysis, and business continuity plans. After they get acclimated to their business, they will be attacked by sophomore hackers. It provides a slice of real life in cybersecurity! This chapter provides a detailed description of laboratory setup, activities, and lessons learned in our attempt to afford cybersecurity students the skills necessary to be immediately productive when joining the workforce.


Cybersecurity workforce Cybersecurity laboratory setup Cybersecurity activities Cybersecurity skill set Cybersecurity work roles GenCyber CyberPatriot 



The author would like to thank the National Security Agency (NSA) for offering her the Cybersecurity Workforce Education Grant that allowed the creation of this chapter. The author would also like to thank Thomas Gustafson, Thomas Janicki, Daniel Menze, Brett Karow, Thomas Janicki, Micah Kryzer, Nikolai Mallett, Paul Runnoe, Ronald Williams, Paul Litecky, and Matthew McCullough for their excellent support and hard work throughout this project.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Alexandria Technical and Community CollegeAlexandriaUSA

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