Bates Technical College, serving nearly 3,000 career training students and 10,000 community members on three campuses, has been helping students reach their education goals and nurturing talent since the 1940’s. As a leader in hands-on learning, Bates Tech mirrors the workplace, and provides students with opportunities to develop and practice the skills they need to be successful in job roles.
The community creates a space for students to achieve their personal and professional goals while focusing on the mission of enriching diverse communities by inspiring student learning, challenging greater achievement, and educating for employment.
Professor Joseph Kauer joined the Bates Tech team in 2019 to build a comprehensive and engaging cybersecurity program that was different from other programs in the region and would set the school apart. He started at the very beginning, setting up computers and creating a computer lab.
The cybersecurity program at Bates Tech has grown each year as more and more students see the many opportunities for skilled cybersecurity professionals in the workforce. As a Project Management oriented cybersecurity professional, Professor Kauer wants students to dive into the world of managing risks. The team at Bates Tech is focused on the expansion into subjects like forensic examination and cloud networking security. Students can actively pursue a two-year Associates of Science (AS) degree or take classes to earn transferable credits for a 4-year institution during their time at Bates Tech.
“The Cybersecurity program at Bates Tech champions diversity. I always tell my students that when you start surrounding yourself with ‘yes men,’ you will get no new ideas. You don’t find new ways to think about things inside of an echo chamber, so having a diverse field allows for critical thinking and creative thinking that encourages individual contributions.”
The Bates Technical College instructors envision success from a student perspective. Professor Kauer leans on his experiences as a student to help him create policies that are student-friendly and drive results. For example, they don’t use a hard stop when it comes to due dates for classwork; it’s accepted until the end of the quarter because Professor Kauer and his team believe that the work is important and want their students to take time to gain that valuable experience. The goal of this program is to create a relaxed environment that facilitates learning and collaboration.
“The virtual machine environment offered by Project Ares is excellent. This easily solves for the problem of not every student having the same hardware or software modules. We are able to place all of our students on an equal starting ground.”
“Our program aims to challenge students to start thinking outside of the box. In the beginning, we like to challenge students to think critically about new types of security exploits.”
From a philosophy of not only teaching skills but also preparing students for future careers, Professor Kauer and his team are successfully integrating hands-on learning through Project Ares into the cybersecurity program at Bates Technical College.