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New Degrees at Embry-Riddle Teach Students to Unlock Planetary Secrets, Safeguard Cyber Secrets

Programs at Prescott, Ariz., Campus in Astronomy, Cyber Intelligence & Security, and Software Engineering with Cyber Security Emphasis to Start in Fall

Prescott, AZ, March 1, 2013

Three New Degrees at Prescott Campus

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Prescott campus will launch three new bachelor’s degree programs this fall to address growing interest in space exploration and the need for online security. The degrees are Astronomy, Cyber Intelligence and Security and Software Engineering with a cyber security emphasis.


The Astronomy degree program takes advantage of the clear skies above northern Arizona’s mountains where the Prescott campus is located and where students will have hands-on access to the campus’s astronomical observatory. Students in the program will work with world-renowned faculty astronomers and their research projects using data from space-based and ground-based observatories around the world.

“Astronomers explore some of the most fascinating phenomena in the universe,” said Brian Rachford, associate professor of physics and director of the new program. “Our program will prepare students to become leaders in the exploration of the universe and develop scientific and technical skills that are applicable to a wide range of careers.”

Cyber Intelligence and Security

The Cyber Intelligence and Security degree program offers a state-of-the-art cyber security laboratory where students will learn how to protect vital national and corporate cyber resources. They will study network and data best practices, cyber regulations and the underlying science of digital and application architecture that can be exploited. With the global economy relying on the Internet, jobs in cyber security are expected to grow 22 percent in the coming decade.

“Graduates of Embry-Riddle’s program will be among the cyber elite required by government agencies and corporations to protect critical infrastructure and shape the cyber policy of the future,” said Jon Haass, associate professor and director of the new program. “We want students, even hackers, who are intrigued by this evolving new field and will use their skills for the good side.”

Software Engineering with Cyber Security emphasis

The Software Engineering degree with a Cyber Security emphasis will prepare students for careers developing and modifying large-scale software for strengthening network security. The design and building of computer systems that are resistant to cyber attacks is at the core of this program, which builds on the success of the university’s award-winning engineering degrees.

“Every day we continue to hear news stories about software networks failing to provide adequate cyber security,” said Chuck Cone, professor and chair of the computer, electrical and software engineering department. “Embry-Riddle’s software engineering degree with an emphasis in cyber security will position our graduates for exciting and high-paying jobs in this rapidly developing field.”

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, the world's largest, fully accredited university specializing in aviation and aerospace, is a nonprofit, independent institution offering more than 70 baccalaureate, master's and Ph.D. degree programs in its colleges of Arts and Sciences, Aviation, Business and Engineering. Embry-Riddle educates students at residential campuses in Daytona Beach, Fla., and Prescott, Ariz., and through the Worldwide Campus with more than 150 locations in the United States, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. The university is a major research center, seeking solutions to real-world problems in partnership with the aerospace industry, other universities and government agencies. For more information, visit, follow us on Twitter (@EmbryRiddle) and, and find expert videos at