Over the summer, the ICT-Digital Media Sector partnered with the Western Academy Support and Training Center (WASTC) to bring training on the latest IT technology to instructors at community colleges across California.
Sessions were held June 11-15 at Cabrillo College and June 18-22 at Coastline Community College. More than 100 instructors attended each program, which included five days of intensive training as well as networking and social events.
The workshops were focused around information security and preparing faculty to provide the best education possible to their students in this growing field. Classes included ethical hacking, CompTIA fundamentals, and cryptography/blockchain analysis.
“The 113-campus California Community College system is fortunate to have a partner like the WASTC to provide ICT industry-wide training at the annual Faculty Development Weeks events,” said Steve Wright, ICT-DM Sector Navigator. “The training is state of the art and innovative, bringing new technologies and skills to light in a collaborative and collegial atmosphere.”
Events also included CyberPatriot coaches training. This popular competition allows students to gain hands-on experience in cybersecurity to supplement what they learn in the classroom.
Faculty who attended the workshops said they were well worth giving up a week of summer vacation to attend.
“Being a faculty and faculty chair at West Los Angeles College, I am always looking for course materials, curriculum resources and best practices to teach,” said Anna Chiang, faculty chair in Computer Science and Applications at West Los Angeles College.
“I have learned so much about IT curriculum resources by attending Faculty Development Weeks this summer,” Chiang continued. “I am so grateful and will encourage my division faculty to take advantage of this low-cost faculty development training.”
Sam Bowne, instructor at City College of San Francisco, took the opportunity to lead a train-the-trainer workshop for his colleagues.
“I really appreciate the opportunity to share new information and techniques with other technical and security instructors,” he said. “The WASTC events are the best by far, bringing the right people together to attend the most current classes on important topics in a comfortable, well-managed learning environment.”
The WASTC formed in 2011 to support Cisco Networking Academy programs by sharing best practices, providing professional development and required instructor training, growing high school participation, maximizing lab equipment budgets, and sponsoring webinars and in-person retooling sessions.
WASTC faculty training events fill a critical need to help community college ICT educators stay updated on the latest technologies in this ever-changing field. Statewide funding helps to keep the cost low so that instructors are better able to attend.
“The WASTC Faculty Development Weeks are cost-effective for faculty and a gift to the California Community College system,” said Wright.
For more information about WASTC training events, visit: https://www.wastc.org/