SANS, Google Cloud and Palo Alto Networks Collaborate with Cyversity to Launch Global Cyber Diversity Academy

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Program made to establish educational pipeline for women and traditionally underrepresented minorities to obtain skills in cybersecurity and cloud computing

“This program will bring new cybersecurity professionals into the workforce with the practical skills and knowledge needed to make our world a safer place,” said Max Shuftan, Director, Mission Programs & Partnerships, SANS.

Cyversity, a 501(c)3 non-profit association dedicated to the academic and professional success of women and underrepresented minorities, today announced its initiative with SANS Institute, Google Cloud and Palo Alto Network s to tackle the “great cyber divide” through a multi-tiered program that provides a pathway for talented, diverse candidates to launch and advance careers in cybersecurity.

According to the 2021 ISACA report, “minorities comprise 26 percent of the cybersecurity workforce and only 21 percent of the overall workforce.” In the 2021 (ISC)2 CybersecurityWorkforce Study, research shows that the cyber field continues to be predominantly male (76 percent) and Caucasian (72 percent). Women have higher rates of workforce entry from self-learning than men (20 percent vs. 14 percent, respectively) and pursuing cybersecurity education to land a job (20 percent vs. 13 percent, respectively). A similar trend is true for ethnic minority respondents: Black/African respondents (18 percent) and Hispanic/Latino respondents (22 percent) pursued education to land their first job at higher rates than Caucasian respondents (12 percent).

“SANS is excited to expand our partnership with Cyversity and further our collective mission to empower individuals launching careers in cyber, close the talent gap, and address the lack of diversity, equity, and inclusion in the field,” said Max Shuftan, Director, Mission Programs & Partnerships, SANS. “This program will bring new cybersecurity professionals into the workforce with the practical skills and knowledge needed to make our world a safer place.”

“Google Cloud is proud to work with partners like Cyversity and help connect women and underrepresented minorities, seeking to enter the cyber security field, with the cloud skills needed to bridge the cyber talent gap and build up the careers of skilled professionals in the space,” said MK Palmore, President of the Bay Area Chapter for Cyversity and a Director for the Office of the CISO, Google Cloud.

“We are thrilled to support the efforts of Cyversity as they launch a program that will help empower and educate the next generation of cyber professionals,” said Mary Ann Byrnes, Palo Alto Networks Cybersecurity Academy Manager. “Providing our Cybersecurity Academy courses through the Cyversity program offers a substantive, innovative way to engage aspiring professionals in cybersecurity.”

The Global Cyber Diversity Academy will provide opportunities for skills development in cyber from different industry partners based on aptitude and career goals. Several hundred total participants globally will be selected for this scholarship and be offered at least one training course plus certification following final selection. Participation requirements:

  • 18 years of age or older at the time of application submission
  • Applicants must have residency status in one of three global regions (North America, South America, or Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA))
  • Cyversity Membership - applicants must sign up for student or professional membership (can join as part of the process) - details at
  • Not currently employed in a cybersecurity role (IT functions OK)

The scholarship closes on November 23. Applicants can apply here.

About SANS Institute The SANS Institute was established in 1989 as a cooperative research and education organization. Today, SANS is the most trusted and, by far, the largest provider of cybersecurity training and certification to professionals in government and commercial institutions world-wide. Renowned SANS instructors teach more than 60 courses at in-person and virtual cybersecurity events and on demand. GIAC, an affiliate of the SANS Institute, validates practitioner skills through more than 35 hands-on, technical certifications in cybersecurity. The SANS Technology Institute, a regionally accredited independent subsidiary, offers master’s and bachelor’s degrees, graduate certificates, and an undergraduate certificate in cybersecurity. SANS Security Awareness, a division of SANS, provides organizations with a complete and comprehensive security awareness solution, enabling them to manage their “human” cybersecurity risk easily and effectively. SANS also delivers a wide variety of free resources to the InfoSec community including consensus projects, research reports, webcasts, podcasts, and newsletters; it also operates the Internet's early warning system–the Internet Storm Center. At the heart of SANS are the many security practitioners, representing varied global organizations from corporations to universities, working together to support and educate the global information security community.

About Google Cloud Google Cloud accelerates every organization's ability to digitally transform its business. We deliver enterprise-grade solutions that leverage Google's cutting-edge technology – all on the cleanest cloud in the industry. Customers in more than 200 countries and territories turn to Google Cloud as their trusted partner to enable growth and solve their most critical business problems.

About Cyversity Cyversity was created as a 501(c)3 non-profit association dedicated to the academic and professional success of minority cybersecurity students and professionals. Cyversity tackles the ‘great cyber divide’ with scholarship opportunities, diverse workforce development, innovative outreach, and mentoring programs.

Leslie Kesselring

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Leslie Kesselring
Kesselring Communications
1 (503) 358-1012
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