Governor McAuliffe visits Radford to announce IMPACT program


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Annie Schroeder |

Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe joined Radford University President Brian Hemphill to announce Radford’s new IMPACT program, on the morning of Friday, September 8, 2017. IMPACT is the first of its kind for Virginia Universities. IMPACT stands for Innovative Mobile Personalized Accelerated Competency Training. IMPACT is a competency-based development program made for students focused on going into the cybersecurity field. IMPACT is meant for students who are interested in competency-based learning.

Competency-based education (CBE) focused on training students, with specific requirements for their chosen field. CBE allows students to complete school work at their own pace and offers online courses so that students can go through the IMPACT program at any given pace that works best for them. IMPACT holds standards that are maintained by the National Institute of Science and Technology and the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education. The need for Cybersecurity has become more widespread after a rise in Cybersecurity attacks. Radford University is recognized by the National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education.

“My mission since day one was to diversify, build and grow what we call that New Virginia Economy, we had to base that on those 21st-century technologies. At the top of that list is Cybersecurity.” Governor McAuliffe said.

The curriculum for IMPACT is designed by professionals for students to not only get better prepared for their career but is also set up for students to be able to network with other professionals. Radford is the first institution statewide to have the program on its campus.

“I don’t want to hear any more about college students graduating with a lot of debt without the skills to match all the jobs that I have open today.” Governor McAuliffe said

Governor McAuliffe, President Brian Hemphill, and Dr. Matt Dunleavy, all spoke to the crowd addressing the ways that IMPACT will benefit the University. Dr. Matt Dunleavy talked about the amount of time and effort it took to get the IMPACT program set up.

McAuliffe discussed that Virginia is the number one state in the country for people who are trying to get jobs in the Cybersecurity field, with Virginia holding 60 percent of nationwide jobs regarding cybersecurity. Governor McAuliffe stated that it’s important for a program like IMPACT to exist because Cybersecurity is going to be a leading job market.

“It’s an exciting day for us to launch a new initiative to provide training and skills development to the business community and government entities and fill a gap in cybersecurity that we are experiencing today. “Randy Ughetta, Director of Business Development, said.

McAuliffe said that Radford being the first of its kind in Virginia to have the IMPACT program will significantly help students going into the Cybersecurity and Geospatial science field.

“Radford University will continue to be a leader, we will continue to respond to the needs of business and industry, and we will continue to serve students in new and profound ways.” President Brian O. Hemphill stated.