MTSU’s Jones College of Business offers new ...

MTSU’s Jones College of Business offers new cybersecurity management program

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. — With electronic data being so foundational to modern commerce and industry, Middle Tennessee State University’s Jennings A. Jones College of Business is now offering a new bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity management — a profession that is expected to grow exponentially over the next decade and beyond.

Dr. Nita Brooks
Dr. Nita Brooks

MTSU’s new program provides students with the foundational knowledge and focused expertise necessary to excel in this high-demand field. The university’s Board of Trustees approved the program in June 2023, and it launched in January 2024.

“We are very excited about this degree. The structure of this program gives students enough room to really add what would be the equivalent of a second minor or area of concentration, which I think strengthens the program,” said Nita Brooks, associate dean for undergraduate programs and accreditation at MTSU’s Jennings A. Jones College of Business. 

MTSU is the only university in Tennessee with a degree related explicitly to cybersecurity management, where the curriculum is designed to support students interested in pursuing careers such as security analysts and information security managers. 

The Bachelor of Science degree covers various areas, including development and programming for cybersecurity, cloud computing, digital forensics, infrastructure design and management, database design, and systems analysis and design — all from a cybersecurity perspective.

It also consists of 120 hours of coursework and has on-ground and online course options.  A business minor is also built into the degree.

Watch a May “Out of the Blue” interview clip with Nita Brooks below.

From mid-2021 to mid-2022, there were more than 650 unique job postings in cybersecurity in Middle Tennessee alone, including areas like Rutherford, Davidson, and Williamson counties. In early 2024, the website reported nearly 7,000 cybersecurity job openings.

Careers include cybersecurity analysts, data security specialists, digital forensics investigators, ethical hacker/systems testers, network support administrators, risk management specialists, vulnerability assessment analysts, and more.

Jones College of Business logo

“The demand for qualified cybersecurity professionals will continue to rise,” said Brooks, who is also a professor in Information Systems and Analytics at MTSU. 

Current projections from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for information security analysts, for example, show a 35% growth rate in demand through 2031, accompanied by a median annual income of $102,600. 

“Cybersecurity is going to remain a dynamic field that continues to deal with evolving issues driven by technological advancements and increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks,” said Brooks.

Department of Information Systems and Analytics logo

According to, more than 1 million people across the United States were estimated to be employed in cybersecurity-related jobs from September 2022 through August 2023. For that same time, the website reported more than 572,000 online job listings for cybersecurity-related positions and said only 72 cybersecurity workers were available for every 100 cybersecurity jobs in demand.  

What is cybersecurity?

Cybersecurity focuses on managing, creating and maintaining secure digital systems. Cybersecurity experts work to protect our most important and private information, such as bank accounts, medical records, military communications, and more. reports a “dangerous shortage of cybersecurity workers in the United States,” which puts “digital privacy and infrastructure at risk.” 

“Cybersecurity is something that must be managed across people, processes, and technology within an organization. It is critical to ensure business continuity,” Brooks said. 

A degree in cybersecurity management helps equip graduates with an understanding of both the technical and management sides of cybersecurity, which allows them to progress higher up an organizational ladder more quickly. The business minor also helps equip graduates with people skills that aren’t part of a traditional curriculum focusing on the computer science side of cybersecurity.

“The cybersecurity field has a high global demand,” Brooks said. “There are opportunities for change and growth within the profession. There are numerous degree and certification opportunities that allow individuals to specialize and to move into managerial positions.

 “There are many career paths within cybersecurity that would build upon various skill sets. You can be very technical, managerial, or somewhere in between.”

To learn more about MTSU’s cybersecurity management program, visit A master’s degree is also offered. Learn more at

—   DeAnn Hays (