San Diego Business Journal The San Diego Workforce Partnership has received a two-year grant of $1.5 million from The James Irvine Foundation to fund CyberHire San Diego — a movement that aims to increase the number of unemployed, underemployed and low-wage workers in cybersecurity careers.


Donald J. Howard, CEO, The James Irvine Foundation

The nonprofit announced the news on April 29.
“CyberHire San Diego leverages the Workforce Partnership’s position at the nexus of business, education and workers to connect the local cybersecurity industry with training providers,” said Donald J. Howard, president and CEO of The James Irvine Foundation.
“This is creating pathways to meaningful careers in a growing sector in San Diego and nationwide. The program strongly aligns with our Better Careers initiative, which seeks to connect low-income Californians to good jobs with family-sustaining wages and advancement opportunities.”


Peter Callstrom, CEO, San Diego Workforce Partnership Inc.

“We are extremely grateful to The James Irvine Foundation for its generous grant that will help the Workforce Partnership connect San Diegans to quality job opportunities in one of our region’s fastest growing sectors,” said Peter Callstrom, CEO of the Workforce Partnership. “With so many cybersecurity jobs in the region and high unemployment due to COVID-19, it is imperative that all people in our communities have equal access to tools, resources, education and job opportunities to help them launch meaningful careers and provide for their families.”
Enrollment for the program is expected to begin in the fall with the grant in place through 2023. The $1.5 million grant will fund industry certification exam fees, intensive certification test preparation for participants and Workforce Partnership staff for the areas of program management and oversight of direct service delivery to job seeker customers in the target audience.
San Diego County is one of the nation’s leading hubs for military and commercial cybersecurity employers, innovation and talent. The Naval Information Warfare Systems Command of the U.S. Navy (also known as NAVWAR) specializes in cybersecurity, among other technology issues.
According to CyberSeek — a cybersecurity information hub funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce — the United States has a total employed cybersecurity workforce of nearly 925,000 people and there are currently almost 510,000 unfilled positions. CyberSeek estimates San Diego has three times the cyber jobs expected in a county of its size, with nearly 9,000 openings from June 2019 to May 2020.