Scale-Up Velocity’s program trains newly discharged IDF soldiers for cybersecurity career
Brought to you by Start-Up Nation Central Editorial

By Einat Paz-Frankel

Cyber4s is a six-month, Full-Stack Cyber program that trains discharged combat soldiers with no technological background for a career in cybersecurity. Now that discharged soldiers cannot follow the Israeli tradition of travelling internationally immediately after they complete their military service, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they can benefit from this training program instead.

The growth of Israel’s high-tech industry in recent years has created a great demand for employees in tech positions, but companies have been struggling to recruit talented and experienced personnel. According to a recent report by Start-Up Nation Central and the Israel Innovation Authority, the shortage is most notable in the cybersecurity industry, one of the leading sectors in Israel’s tech ecosystem.

The ecosystem currently relies on third-party programs that can help prepare potential employees for a career as programmers or developers, but such programs might not be sufficient. Now, a new program, “Cyber4s” – developed by Scale-Up Velocity, in partnership with the Israel National Cyber Directorate (INCD), the IDF Profession for Life Directorate, and leading Israeli tech companies – will train discharged IDF combat soldiers for cyber roles.

Using IBM’s SkillsBuild digital learning platform, Cyber4s’ six-month, Full-Stack Cyber program trains discharged combat soldiers with no technological background for a career in cybersecurity. The program paves the way for young men and women who served in the military, but not necessarily in an elite intelligence unit, to enter Israel’s lucrative cyber industry.

Change of plans due to COVID-19

Now that discharged soldiers cannot follow the Israeli tradition of travelling internationally immediately after they complete their military service, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they can benefit from this training program instead. Dozens of students (out of 350 candidates) are expected to graduate from this mostly online program (due to COVID-19) in about five months. The program combines online courses, mentoring by developers and team leads, and occasional face-to-face meetings. Throughout the course, participants will engage in hands-on projects within tech companies, and improve their “soft skills,” including résumé writing, job interview preparation, presentation skills, problem solving, design thinking, negotiation, teamwork and more.

At the end of each course, students will earn a diploma; mentors will continue to guide graduates as they search for employment in the field, and once hired, mentors will guide them as they integrate into the organization.

Founded by Start-Up Nation Central, Scale-Up Velocity develops solutions for the human capital challenges Israel’s high-tech sector faces, by expanding and improving its talent pool. Its initiatives range from practical coding bootcamps geared toward talent from untapped communities, to policy recommendations for decisionmakers looking to tackle the shortage in human capital within Israel’s tech sector.

To learn more about Scale-Up Velocity’s programs, click here.