Our last several blogs have been super specific to topics that have been relevant to things happening right now. Never a bad thing but sometimes it is good to stick to the basics. CyberUp has tons of folks who reach out to us with this very question, “How do I get into cybersecurity?” Although there isn’t a simple answer to the question we thought it would be worthwhile to lay out the questions we are asked during the conversation and the advice we give.

Each conversation generally starts with three simple questions:

  1. What is your timeline/need to break into cybersecurity?
  2. What is your budget to get the training/skills you will need?
  3. What type of training do you think you will need?

Let’s explain why these questions are important.

What is your timeline?

Given the recent global pandemic and even before, we had many people reach out to us out of necessity. They found themselves out of work and exploring ways that they could support a family. The cybersecurity industry has done a fantastic job of marketing the demand for talent and the possibilities of earning a good income. All facts but it aren’t as easy as it is made out to be. It is going to take some amount of time to go through a training or education program. Depending on the person’s situation there are options. The longest option is a traditional college education. Both 4-year and community colleges provide good curricula but can take a bit longer for someone looking to transition quickly. The quickest option available is a pay-to-play boot camp or stacking some certifications. There are several options out there like our partners at Fullstack Academy and they provide proven and short-term training options. Not as quick or long as the previous two options are programs like ours that provide pre-apprenticeship training. All three skill paths provide you with a foundational set of knowledge that should provide you with a baseline of skills necessary to obtain that first role.

What is your budget?

Let us start out by saying, CyberUp is committed to providing access to free and high-quality cybersecurity training so this isn’t an endorsement to pay us for what we do, but a way to highlight that we are not the only option available. All three listed above are viable options and each has unique advantages over the other. There are efforts all across the country by companies who are reimagining how they are hiring and reducing the need for college degrees but let’s be honest….we aren’t fully there yet. A college degree still remains critical to someone’s long-term success and upward mobility. If there isn’t a time crunch and a person has the availability of resources needed to pay for school, choosing one of the incredible cybersecurity programs created is always a solid option for someone. A boot camp is going to require a larger upfront cost but the pace, curriculum, and time to the end goal, employment, can be much faster. Many of them are full-time programs that can end in just a few months. If the resources are there and the time-to-goal is important the cost may be worth it for an individual. Lastly, programs like ours also provide the training and credentials required to obtain a job. However, we simply are not as fast as a boot camp and w