The National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security have designated Hill College as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education through academic year 2024. 

This CAE-CDE is approved for the Associate of Applied Science degree in computer science networking cybersecurity program.

“This designation will help our ability to meet the increasing demands of the program criteria and will serve the nation well in contributing to the protection of the National Information Infrastructure,” HC computer science instructor Jackie Armstrong said. “The National Cyber Strategy — September 2018, —addresses the critical shortage of professionals with cybersecurity skills and highlights the importance of higher education as a solution to defending America’s cyberspace.” 

The application procedure poignantly reveals the importance of unifying local K-12 schools, community colleges and universities to bring cyber security/defense awareness to our communities, students and industries. 

“Going forward, Hill College will strengthen these relationships in order to better serve our community, just as this process has strengthened the ties within our institution,” Armstrong said. “Cyber defense is a united fight for all.

“We are excited about the challenge to enlighten, inform, educate, and provide training for our service community, public schools, and industry of the opportunities in cybersecurity. Our strategy is to utilize the Cyber Center as the nucleus of our charge.” 

The Cyber Center provides information regarding our computer science educational offerings and contact information for each of our campuses. The center webpage provides links to general cybersecurity information designed to help businesses, educators and individuals in our community be acutely aware and combat cybercrime. 

Cyber Center will continue to shape and evolve into a valuable resource for Hill College students, faculty and staff, our community service areas and area kindergarten through 12 public schools.

“A highly skilled cybersecurity workforce is a strategic national security advantage,” National CAE Program Manager Karen Leuschner said. “The U.S. Government will continue to invest in and enhance programs that build the domestic talent pipeline, from primary through postsecondary education.” 

The computer science networking cybersecurity specialization Associate of Applied Science degree education plan is a part of the STEM — Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics — pathway at Hill College. It is a total of 60 credit hours and includes an 18 credit hour technical core certificate of completion and a 45-hour networking cybersecurity certificate of technology and ultimately the AAS degree.

According to Career Coach, not only is there a demand for computer scientists but new workers generally start around $74,176. Normal pay for computer and information research scientists is $135,693 per year, while highly experienced workers can earn as much as $183,265.

For information about the program, visit or contact Armstrong at 254-659-7950 or To register for the program, contact the academic advising office at 254-659-7650 or

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