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Be Prepared

The role of the CISO is gaining in prominence. Are you ready?

Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) Certificate

The challenges and demands facing information security leaders grow increasingly complex.

NOTE: For everyone's health and safety during the ongoing pandemic, all CISO Certificate Program deliveries will be virtual for Cohorts 15 and 16. The revised dates based on this decision are reflected in the schedules below.

CISO program sealThe reality is no longer “if” your company has been hacked, or even “when.” The reality today is, “You’ve been hacked, you just don’t know it yet.” The need is growing for individuals with a cross-section of business acumen, technical ability, and expertise in cybersecurity. 

In the CISO Certificate Program, you will learn the skills you need to be an effective CISO through targeted interdisciplinary coursework and hands-on practical application, led by world-renowned faculty from Carnegie Mellon University’s Heinz College and Software Engineering Institute (SEI). Named a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education by the NSA and U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Heinz College is a crucial asset to cybersecurity education and practice in the United States

This six-month program, co-administered by Heinz College and the CERT Division of SEI, blends on-campus and synchronous distance learning and is designed to enhance the careers of cyber leaders.

All students admitted to the CISO Certificate Program will have at least five years of relevant managerial experience, giving you the chance to collaborate with similarly experienced peers and build exciting new relationships and networks with your cohort.

"This was the right direction to go."

CISOs Patrick Forbes of S&P Global and Corey T. Jackson of the Travelers Companies talk about what they gained from the program, and what executive training from CMU has meant to their careers.

The CISO program helped me to step into my role as a Chief Information Security Officer. The program prepared me to address the many challenges facing a CISO—operational resilience, threat management, cyber risk management, insider threat. The practicum allowed me to work with cyber experts from great organizations and guided us in framing the communications necessary to lead an organization through cybersecurity problems, and communicate with our Boards. Greg Crabb | Chief Information Security Officer, Vice President | United States Postal Service

CISO Certificate Program Information

Applications are currently being accepted for Cohort 16, beginning January 2021.

CISO Curriculum

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Master of Science in Information Technology (Online)

The Master of Science in Information Technology (MSIT) is our part-time online program for professionals seeking graduate degrees in IT; Heinz certificate program graduates are eligible for a MSIT tuition discount.

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Graduates of the CISO Certificate Program will have access to new CISO Program modules created in the future, providing you with continuing education after the program ends. Approval is required.

Please note: This benefit does not extend to future CIO, CRO, or Digital LEEP program modules, unless the student is also a graduate of those programs.


Students who complete the CISO Certificate Program and who subsequently apply for and are admitted into the Heinz College MSIT Degree Program are eligible for a tuition discount scholarship. Tuition that has been paid for completing any or all of the Heinz College Executive Education certificate programs (up to $40,000) by the individual student or their sponsor/employer will be matched with a tuition discount from the MSIT program—reducing the cost to complete the MSIT degree by up to $40,000.

In order to be considered, applicants to the MSIT program should indicate their enrollment status with the CIO, CISO, CRO and/or Digital LEEP certificate program(s) on the Application for Admission.

Please note: The tuition discount is only available once a student has completed all of the certificate program’s requirements. Completion of a certificate program does not guarantee admission to the MSIT program.