Aberdeen Proving Ground’s (APG) Communications-Electronics Command (CECOM), Software Engineering Center, G6 (Information Management) and Harford Community College (HCC) are working together to offer an opportunity for students at HCC to apply and be selected competitively to participate in the CECOM Cooperative Education Program.

An information session about the program was held at HCC’s campus on September 24 with more than 40 students participating. APG human resource officials and directors discussed requirements and work expectations as well as a day in the life of a civilian cyber worker. Additionally, the Susquehanna Workforce Network teamed with Harford Community College to present a USAJOBS navigation session and resume building clinic.

The CECOM Co-op Education program will bring participants onboard competitively via a Pathways Internship not to exceed one year, with the possibility of an extension up to an additional year. A work tour is a period of time when a Co-op participant works full-time, on-site at a CECOM organization located at APG, located in Harford County in northeastern Maryland. The Co-op participant will start their first work tour in late August of 2019. Once the initial work tour is completed, there is no guarantee of additional work tours.

HCC’s program will require three educational terms and two work tours; students will alternate between a semester of work and school. The program will begin with the first academic term at HCC with a minimum of 12 credits, then the first six-month paid employment tour at APG if selected, followed by the second academic term at the school, then the second six-month paid employment tour, and conclude with the third and final academic term.

While there is no guarantee for students to gain permanent employment at APG through this program, HCC’s College and Career Navigator will work with students on an individualized education plan to help ensure that students earn a degree or certificate. In addition, students will prepare for the Certified Authorization Profession (CAP) industry certification exam.

The College is working to recruit cyber, computer science and computer information systems students through October 18 to apply for cooperative employment through the USAJOBS website. Candidates who apply, are referred, interviewed and selected will need to complete a background investigation.

Undergraduates enrolled in the program must maintain regular student status along with a minimum GPA of 2.5 for undergraduate study throughout the appointment.

At the end of three education terms and two work tours, the student will have gained an HCC academic credential, a degree or certificate; CAP industry certification; and, potentially, a security clearance.

Through the program, APG will be provided with a continuous source of new talent and original ideas. In addition, HCC will not only succeed in their mission to help students achieve their academic and employment goals, but also will support APG and cyber workforce development.


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Scott Kramer, Services Information System Security Manager (ISSM) with the Software Engineering Center at Aberdeen Proving Ground, speaks to HCC students about working in cyber and information technology cooperative education positions.

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Kelly Koermer, Dean of Integrated Business and Applied Technology at Harford Community College, speaks to HCC students about cooperative education experiences through IBAT.