The Beaufort County Information Technology Department currently is hosting a cybersecurity student internship program with USCB. Student interns are getting real-world experience working as IT security analysts with Beaufort County.
The internship program provides a tailored work experience that meets local governments’ current and future workforce needs.
The program includes expectations of a strong work ethic, communication, interpersonal, and computer science\cyber-security skills. Each intern will receive periodic performance reviews as well as peer reviews.
Candidates for the positions are selected by USCB staff and will go through the onboarding process with Beaufort County. The length of the internship is based upon the availability of the intern. This is a paid position and interns will be paid an agreed-upon rate of the work performed, and are considered part-time employees.
USCB offers a Bachelor of Science in information science and technology with concentration in cybersecurity for careers in technical areas related to the field of cybersecurity. This degree aligns with a course of study required by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. National Security Agency in order for USCB to be officially designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense.
USCB is a primary academic partner with the South Coast Cyber Center, a nonprofit partnership that includes the Technical College of the Lowcountry, the Beaufort Digital Corridor, the city of Beaufort and the Beaufort County Economic Development Corporation, along with business leaders.
The South Coast Cyber Center aims to help recent graduates, exiting military personnel, and members of the local community attain high-paying jobs by delivering affordable and relevant cybersecurity education and training.
“Cybersecurity education is a critical component of the cybersecurity ecosystem. The quality, depth, and diversity of its educational programming work towards creat¬ing a cyber-aware population,” said Assistant County Administrator Patrick Hill. “Giving students experience in protecting and securing a complex local government infrastructure is a great pathway to increase the cyber workforce development within Beaufort County.”
Working in a real-world environment helps cyber students understand the security challenges and threats facing infrastructures today. Internships help students learn about their capabilities, and ultimately encourages them to understand their strengths and weaknesses better.
“Internships are invaluable to the student and Beaufort County,” said Shakeeya Polite, IT director-systems management. “Getting on-the-job experience is invaluable for the student. It allows the county, as a potential future employer, to guide students and help them expand their skills and experience in the workplace. With cyber security as the fastest growing career field, Beaufort County is uniquely positioned to develop a pool of qualified future employees.”
Internships equip students with more than just technical skills: business and technical knowledge are also necessary. People skills, such as a collaborative work ethic, learning to be a team player, working under pressure, and knowing why deadlines matter, are also developed.
There are numerous internship opportunities available with Beaufort County. The Communication Services and Legal Departments are also collaborating with local colleges and universities with a student internship program.
For more information about securing an internship, visit beaufortcountysc.gov/humanresources or call 843-255-2990.