Glendale Community College preparing students for a cybersecurity career

There are hundreds of thousands of open jobs in cybersecurity across the country.

These are high paying jobs, and Glendale Community College is doing its part to prepare workers for a successful career.

"Cybersecurity isn’t going anywhere, the need for cybersecurity professionals is going to continue to grow," Drew Nichols said.

Nichols is the lead engineer of the Gaucho Security Operations Center. We got a tour of it today.

"GSOC, or the Gaucho Security Operations Center is a program that we’ve put together to partner with rural communities and help with their security monitoring," Nichols said.

Ryan Murray who is the deputy director of the Arizona Department of Homeland Security also stopped by the college to see the center.

He says there are 8,000 cybersecurity job openings in our state alone.

"It’s one of those things that it’s always going to be a problem," Murray said. "There’s just not enough people that we can train and teach and get out into the workforce to fill this gap."

The school has about 500 students enrolled in the program.

"I still lack the experience of actually being in the environment or a taste of being in the industry and this happened to be one of the opportunities that was given to me, so I simply took it," Kevin said.

Kacskos, who is pursuing a job in cybersecurity, said a select group of interns like Kacskos are getting hands-on experience thanks to a partnership between the school and the City of Wickenburg.

Mayor Rui Pereira says his town has to be vigilant.

"It’s going to assist these rural communities that don’t have the resources to be able to become more secure and be able to detect attacks much faster and respond to them much quicker," Pereira said.

The goal is to continue to grow the program and partner with more rural communities as well as businesses that need IT and cybersecurity help.

"It’s important to reach out to them because those communities are under what we call the cybersecurity poverty line," Nichols said. "They just don’t have the resources to do the cybersecurity monitoring."