SANS Institute Answers the White House Call to Bolster National Cyber Workforce, Expanding the SANS Cyber Academy: A Pillar of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Bethesda, MD, June 15, 2023 – SANS Institute, the world-renowned leader in cybersecurity training, enthusiastically responds to the call of the Administration in the recent National Cyber Strategy with the expansion of the SANS Cyber Academy. As it enters its ninth year, this robust and complimentary cybersecurity training initiative is a proven model to cultivate a diverse and inclusive workforce that bridges the cybersecurity talent gap.

“In the rapidly evolving landscape of cybersecurity, creating a rich tapestry of perspectives and an environment of equal opportunity is paramount. Our newly rebranded SANS Cyber Academy is committed to this goal, providing accessible, top-tier training to individuals from diverse backgrounds who are passionate about entering this field,” said Max Shuftan, Director of SANS Mission Programs & Partnerships.

Designed to serve as a stepping stone for those seeking a career transition, the SANS Cyber Academy extends its arms to veterans, active-duty military and their spouses, women of all races, and underrepresented groups in cybersecurity. This opportunity offers the platform needed to begin a stimulating and rewarding career in this rapidly evolving field.

“Emily Stocker, SOC Analyst I at Belcan and a SANS Cyber Academy alumna, shares her transformative journey: “After a decade as a nanny, the Women’s Academy equipped me with the confidence to delve into the vast cybersecurity landscape. Despite knowing there would always be new tools and technologies to learn, the comprehensive knowledge I gained through the academy assured me that I could surmount any challenges in this new, exciting career.”

“Diversity and inclusivity fuel innovation and that’s exactly what the cybersecurity sector needs,” said Monisha Bush, SANS Mission Programs and Partnerships Coordinator and a member of the SANS DEIB Task Force. “Our Academy is committed to empowering diverse talents, and by connecting them with potential employers, we are ensuring they are well-equipped with the knowledge and opportunities to excel.”

The Academy delivers multiple benefits to its students, setting them on a path to success. Students stand to launch a high-paying career, with an average graduate salary of $90K USD per year. Furthermore, they will gain access to cost-free, comprehensive training guided by SANS Institute, along with an effective advising model designed to foster consistent progress. Graduates will also gain tangible, real-world skills and industry-recognized GIAC certifications that make them highly desirable to employers in the cybersecurity landscape.

Reflecting on her career shift, Katie Ritchie, now a Security Consultant II at Bishop Fox and a SANS Cyber Academy alumna, says, “Transitioning from a role in quality assurance, the hands-on training and certifications I received through SANS allowed me to more than triple my income in less than a year. Self-study might have brought me here eventually, but the ability to achieve my end goal of becoming a penetration tester — a journey I assumed would take several years and multiple positions — has been positively life-altering.”

Embrace the opportunity to make a real difference in the world of cybersecurity. Learn more about how you can transform your career at and apply June 1st through the 30th.