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View Governor McAuliffe's DCC announcement

Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced the National Security Agency and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security had officially designated Danville Community College as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense at a DCC event Thursday. “This prestigious designation is not only good news for DCC, it is good news for the commonwealth,” McAuliffe said.
The governor made the announcement to a room filled with DCC students and staff, Danville and Pittsylvania County elected officials, Danville and Pittsylvania County school leaders and McAuliffe administration officials. To earn the distinction, DCC and its cyber security program had to demonstrate significant contributions in areas like cyber security education, outreach and knowledge. DCC is now one of only four schools in Virginia with this designation.
McAuliffe said he believed the program would help transform the workforce into one ready for some of the highest paying and widest available jobs anywhere in the country. “I talk about cyber security every single day,” McAuliffe said.
According to McAuliffe, there are around 3,600 unfilled cyber security jobs available today in Virginia with an average starting salary of $88,000. They help guard against cyber attacks on personal data, medical records, bank accounts and other types of data.
“These are the jobs of the 21st century,” McAuliffe said.
Additionally, McAuliffe said many of the jobs could be performed remotely, making it perfect for rebuilding areas of the state like Southwest Virginia and the Dan River Region. “You can do these jobs everywhere,” he said.
DCC Professor and Cyber Center Director Steve Carrigan started working on the receiving the designation in 2015. Then, he wasn’t sure if he would be able to complete the long, arduous process. “The past 18 months have been something else,” Carrigan said.
Carrigan said he was also proud of many of his alumni. “In fact, some of them are now coming back and hiring current graduates,” Carrigan said.
DCC student David Payne came to the school in 2015 in search of a new career and a new start. After just a few months in the program, he was hired by Hewlett Packard Enterprise as an IT specialist.
“I would not be where I am today without Danville Community College’s information technology and cybersecurity programs, which gave me the technical skills and know how to make a career out of doing what I love,” he said.

2016 Board Member Recognition

The SPTC recognized outgoing board member for their service and dedication. Each member served two 3-year terms on the board. Pictured: SPTC President, Melany Stowe, Jerry Franklin, Phillip Wright, and David Cartwright.

2016 Partner Member Recognition

The SPTC recognized 2016 Partner members for their support at the December Membership Appreciation Breakfast. Pictured: Ken Larking, City of Danville, Becky Martin, Mid Atlantic Broadband, Jon Horin, Noblis, and Melany Stowe, Institute for Advanced Learning and Research. Not pictured: The Center for Innovative Technology.
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