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Program Overview

The Harrisburg University, Security Center of Excellence, Information Security Officer Certificate Program provides a unique focus on leadership information security for executive-level IT professionals. It enables IT leaders responsible for information security to further develop the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed at the executive level.

The program focuses on enhancing the following skills:

  • Leadership and Management – leadership and communication skills to build alliances across the business and establish security strategies that align with organizational objectives.
  • Information Security Governance & Risk Management – Compliance requirements and the strategic decisions based on the identification of risk
  • Information Security Architecture Management – Fundamental concepts of computer security, software development lifecycle, and countermeasures
  • Security Technology & Operations – Incident detection, incident response, and disaster recovery scenarios.

Program Benefits/Curriculum

To enable Information Security Officers to successfully bridge business and security strategies, the curriculum balances technical and management topics, and will appeal to both those who are natural techies, and those who are more at home with business and management responsibilities.

By focusing on security strategy, technology, communications policy, finance, and emerging technologies, the program covers a broad range of knowledge and skills needed to lead at the executive level.

Senior level IT security professionals will experience a venue for peer learning, network building and brainstorming that is refreshing and highly valuable.

Participants will explore all of the relevant skills and knowledge to conduct a thorough security assessment of their own organization, resulting in an action plan for improvement as an applied project and work-product.

Performance Objectives

This course prepares individuals to perform the primary responsibilities of a Information Security Officer. Application of these skills to the performance of security management will be emphasized.

The program will help develop the skills and knowledge needed to:

  • Provide strategic leadership as a steward of the organization’s information security and a trusted partner with other business executives in the organization.
  • Develop and implement a robust, accurate, and actionable metrics reporting process that maps back to the business.
  • Understand and manage the risk posture of an organization.
  • Communicate and work closely with legal and privacy officers to protect the organization from legal and regulatory non-compliance.
  • Establish and manage the organization’s security policy catalog.
  • Understand requirements for secure development lifecycle, and application security concepts.
  • Understand and manage the security implications of emerging technologies.
  • Secure adequate resources, and manage the IT Security budget.
  • Lead and manage a technical staff of security managers, architects, engineers and specialists, as well as contractors and vendors.

Program Format

  • This program is seven (7) months in duration.
  • Classes meet VIRTUALLY/ONLINE via Microsoft Teams, one and a half days (1.5) per month, on Thursdays and Fridays.
    • Thursday class time is 9:00 am – 4:00 pm, ET
    • Friday class time is 9:00 am – 12:00 pm, ET

See “NEXT COHORT” at the bottom of the page for the full schedule

Module Topics

Module 1: Information Security Implementation Skills
Creating a security culture within your organization by leading people and managing programs

Module 2: Information Risk Management
Identifying acceptable organizational risk thresholds and developing a risk management program

Module 3: Information Security Governance
Establishing and maturing internal governance processes to ensure all the below initiatives run smoothly and receive the required funding and that corporate leadership understands the importance

Module 4: Information Security Architecture Management
Discuss a mature organizational posture that mitigates vulnerabilities and risks

Module 5: End to End Security Operations and Continuous Monitoring
Developing a proactive culture around security operations, ongoing monitoring, and pre-emptive responsiveness.

Module 6: Ownership and Authorization Process
Establish executive sponsorship for the Authorization to Operate (ATO) process to ultimately develop an “Ongoing Authorization” Culture

Module 7: Capstone Presentations & Graduation

Required Qualifications

Candidates must possess the following criteria to be considered for admission in Information Security Officer Certificate program:

  • A Minimum of 5 years’ IT security experience -OR- IT security leadership responsibility in their current role;
  • Senior-level management/executive responsibility; AND
  • Candidates are anticipated to be an Information Security Officer, -OR- have CISO or ISO responsibilities.

Expectations & Class Attendance Policy

  • Participants will be expected to complete readings and some written work prior to sessions. A capstone project, applying the program’s core curriculum to a tech assessment project will be produced and presented by participants.
  • Attendance at a minimum of 90% of the sessions is required.
  • Awarding of a certificate of completion will be based on a pass-fail assessment of the program’s curricular, attendance, and project-based requirements.

Registration Fees


  • For-profit organizations (private-sector): $3,885
  • Non-profit organizations and government (public-sector): $2,885

Those accepted into the program or their organizations are responsible for the per-participant cost of the program.

Payment is not due upon application. It is due upon acceptance into the program, with invoices emailed with acceptance letters.

Application Process

The application process consists of these steps:

    To apply, candidates should:• Click the “Apply Now” button under “Next Cohort” below.
    • Be prepared to answer questions about their learning goals, past experiences, expertise, and knowledge they will bring to the cohortNote: Candidates will not be prompted to submit payment as part of the initial application process.
    Candidates will demonstrate the support of their senior leadership by submitting a letter of nomination written on their behalf.The nomination letter should include current position and responsibilities of the applicant, along with skills, knowledge, and any special projects for which the applicant is responsible.*The nomination letter should be addressed to “ISO Program Directors” and emailed to: with the subject line as, “ISO Nomination Letter for [YOUR FIRST AND LAST NAME]”Note: The deadline to submit nomination letters is the same date as the application deadline. See “NEXT COHORT” at the bottom of the page for deadline dates.

“Coming from a mostly operational background, I benefitted most from the discussions on risk management and building a security program. Plus I learned how to get a seat at the leadership table.”

Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) Certificate Student

2023 Cohort Schedule

Our 2023 program is now underway.  If you’re interested in this program and would like to receive information and announcements for the next cohort, please email with the subject line, “ISO Program Inquiry”

Application Deadline:
Tuesday, March 7, 2023

All applications and nomination letters are due by this date.

See the “Application Process” above for detailed information.

Acceptance Notification:
On/By Friday, March 10, 2023

On/By Monday, MARCH 13, 2023

All applicants will be notified of whether they have or have not been accepted into the program.



Classes meet VIRTUALLY/ONLINE via Microsoft Teams, one and a half days (1.5) per month

  • Thursday class time is 9:00 am – 4:00 pm, ET
  • Friday class time is 9:00 am – 12:00 pm, ET
Student Orientation – Tuesday, March 7, 2023 (Time TBD)
Module 1 – Thursday/Friday – March 16-17, 2023
Module 2 – Thursday/Friday – April 13-14, 2023
Module 3 – Thursday/Friday – May 11-12, 2023
Module 4 – Thursday/Friday – June 15-16, 2023
Module 5 – Thursday/Friday – July 20-21, 2023
Module 6 – Thursday/Friday – August 24-25, 2023
Module 7* – Thursday/Friday – September 28-29, 2023
*Note: Module 7, Day 1 – Capstone Presentations, Day 2 – Program Year in Review session and Graduation
a gold ring on a colorful surface

Our Centers and Institutes Security Center of Excellence (SCE)

The Harrisburg University GTI Security Center of Excellence aims to be a strategic partner with public sector organizations in their information security and cyber defense efforts by providing innovative and effective educational programs and community building services.


SCE Sponsors
ADA Statement: HU is committed to providing equal education opportunity and full participation for persons with disabilities. It is HU’s policy that no qualified person be excluded from participating in any HU program or activity, be denied the benefits of any HU program or activity, or otherwise be subject to discrimination regarding any HU program or activity. Should you potentially require an accommodation under the ADA to participate in this program, please email Please send your request for an accommodation at least 5 business days in advance of the event or program.

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