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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Bob Jones High School’s cybersecurity program is the first high school in the country to be accepted into a nationally recognized cybersecurity honor society.

The Order of the Sword and Shield is a national honor society on the collegiate and professional level in the fields of homeland security, intelligence, emergency management and all protective security disciplines.

Bob Jones Cybersecurity Instructor Bill McIlwain said, “First of all it’s a huge honor and it feels like a huge responsibility as well because we want this to go well.”

The Order of the Sword and Shield has chapters at colleges throughout the country.

Superintendent Ed Nichols says this will not only open doors for madison city school students in the cybersecurity field but also ultimately helping the community by increasing the workforce in an area with growing demand.

So, how did Bob Jones get accepted into a college-level honor society? Senior Cameron Cummings says it was persistence.

“We did some research and we found out it was really only college level but we didn’t let that stop us, we kept pushing forwards to see what we could do. Sending out emails to different places and one place responded, The Order of the Sword and Shield.” Cummings said.

McIlwain says this will help students build their resumes, earn scholarships and ultimately open doors for careers.

Nichols echoed the sentiment, “Our goal as a school system is to meet the workforce demands not only in this community but globally. That’s our desire, to prepare our students for global success.”

The screening committee was so impressed with the Bob Jones program they not only approved their certification as a chapter but also waived the charter fee.

Madison City Schools Administration says this will open pathways for students in the computer science academy in the school system who plan to pursue cyber and IT fields.