New NICE Strategic Plan Includes Focus on Discovery of Cybersecurity Careers, Transforming Learning, and Modernizing Talent Management


The National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) has released the NICE Strategic Plan at the annual NICE Conference and Expo 2020. The event is being held virtually this year.  The five-year strategic plan outlines the vision, mission, values, goals, and objectives for NICE (led by the National Institute of Standards and Technology in the U.S. Department of Commerce) and the greater NICE community.

The mission of NICE is “to energize, promote, and coordinate a robust community working together to advance an integrated ecosystem of cybersecurity education, training, and workforce development.”  An updated strategic plan is required every five years according to the Cybersecurity Enhancement Act.

The plan sets a bold vision to “prepare, grow, and sustain a cybersecurity workforce that safeguards and promotes America’s national security and economic prosperity.”  This “cybersecurity workforce” includes those whose primary focus is on cybersecurity as well as those in the workforce who need specific cybersecurity-related knowledge and skills in order to perform their work in a way that enables organizations to properly manage the cybersecurity-related risks to the enterprise.

Strategic goals include:

  • Promote the Discovery of Cybersecurity Careers and Multiple Pathways
  • Transform Learning to Build and Sustain a Diverse and Skilled Workforce
  • Modernize the Talent Management Process to Address Cybersecurity Skills Gaps
  • Expand Use of the Workforce Framework for Cybersecurity (NICE Framework)
  • Drive Research on Effective Practices for Cybersecurity Workforce Development

The goals and objectives in the strategic plan will be augmented by implementation plans and corresponding metrics developed through a consultative process.  “Closing the cybersecurity skills gap necessitates a community effort,” said Rodney Petersen, the Director of NICE.  “To achieve success, the public and private sectors need to work together and embrace the plan’s values: foster communication, facilitate collaboration, and share and leverage resources to support community-developed approaches and solutions.”

The goals and objectives in the strategic plan will be featured weekly during the four week, virtual NICE Conference & Expo 2020 with break-out track sessions to address Career Discovery, The Learning Ecosystem, and The Talent Lifecycle.  There will also be plenary conference panel discussions covering each of the five goals with panelists from industry, academia, and the government.