A cybersecurity talent gap exists across our country. According to Cyberseek.com, in Arvest’s 4-state footprint alone, there are currently over 38,000 vacant cybersecurity jobs. Jobs range from leadership to engineers, but the position most requested by employers is an entry-level Cybersecurity Analyst.
We believe closing our talent gap is imperative to improving our security posture. This is why we have established an ongoing partnership with Forge Institute, the Nation’s leader in advancing cyber capabilities through innovative partnerships across the public and private sectors1.
Arvest’s collaboration with Forge Institute offers Arvest associates two education paths: training as part of a pre-apprenticeship or apprenticeship program and continuing education. Continuing education enables associates already pursuing a career in information security to expand their knowledge base, presenting career growth opportunities, while the apprenticeship training opens the door for associates who may not have formal information security education but desire a career in the field. Arvest Apprentices attend Forge Institute’s 14-week Cyber Training Bootcamp while working side-by-side with our Information Security Team. Once the apprentices graduate from the boot camp, they continue to learn from our team for 38 more weeks. The hands-on training and real-life experiences gained during this time are the perfect steppingstones to a career in Information Security. The benefits are two-fold. It increases Arvest’s security posture by helping close the talent gap and it supports our associates’ career goals.
Closing our own talent gap is only part of the equation. Arvest partners with Forge Institute in community events as well. In October, Arvest participated on multiple panels at Forge Institute’s annual Cyber Summit. This event brought approximately 300 members of the cyber community together to participate in two days of intense collaboration with a focus on “Developing Arkansas as the Cyber Defense State.2
Most recently, Arvest and Forge Institute joined forces to host the Fall 2022 Recru(IT) Cyber Speed Interviewing |Forging New Relationships. This event, held at the Arvest Fusion Center in Rogers, AR, gave employers in our community the opportunity to meet Forge’s most recent IT/Cyber Fundamentals boot camp graduates. At this event, the graduates not only have the chance to talk to career professionals but the possibility of turning their dream of a new career into a reality. A win for employers, graduates, and our community.
Photo Credit: Forge Institute