SALISBURY, N.C. – Rowan-Cabarrus Community College has received Program of Study Validation for its cybersecurity program from the National Security Agency (NSA). This special designation from NSA’s National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense (CAE-CD) program positions the College as a trusted provider of cybersecurity education.

“We are pleased and honored to receive Program of Study Validation status as a testament to the excellence of our cybersecurity program,” said Dr. Carol S. Spalding, president of Rowan-Cabarrus. “The College works hard to ensure that all aspects of our curriculum are cutting-edge and that we are able to meet the critical and ever-changing needs of the cybersecurity workforce. With more than 7,000 cybersecurity-related job vacancies in the Charlotte/Concord metro area, completing this validation process means that we are in a unique position to train needed cybersecurity workers for our region.”

The NSA and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) developed the Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense program in the early 2000s to provide a method for community colleges to pursue the Program of Study Validation. To receive the designation, colleges must submit all curriculum and course assignments for review by a team from the NSA and DHS, who ensure that coursework aligns with the objectives and outcomes defined as job requirements of the agencies.

Having an approved program of study through CAE means that Rowan-Cabarrus students receive training that is in line with the requirements expected of federal cybersecurity employees. To achieve Program of Study Validation status, Rowan-Cabarrus was required to submit information relating to curriculum, faculty qualifications, information about equipment and lab environments, and its processes for continuous improvement.

For more information about the Rowan-Cabarrus cybersecurity program, please visit