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National organization selects WCC’s Corrinne Sande as outstanding regional faculty member

She leads WCC’s acclaimed Computer Information Systems program and national cybersecurity education initiatives

Post Date:08/05/2016 11:57 a.m.

Bellingham, Wash. –Whatcom Community College’s Corrinne Sande has been selected as the 2016 Pacific Regional Faculty Member Award winner by the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT). Ms. Sande is the director of computer sciences and information systems/CyberWatch West at Whatcom and is a renowned national leader in cybersecurity education.

For the past 17 years, Ms. Sande has provided exceptional leadership in growing WCC’s Computer Information System (CIS) program. As the lead faculty member in CIS, she gained national recognition for the College in cybersecurity education. Due to her leadership and vision, WCC is one of only a few dozen community colleges nationwide named a Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense 2-Year Education by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security. WCC is a founding member of CyberWatch West, one of only four cybersecurity education centers in the nation, established by the National Science Foundation. Ms. Sande has played a key role in WCC’s successful awards of over $9 million in state and local grants, too.

Through Ms. Sande’s commitment to continued cybersecurity training and certifications, new fields of educational career options have opened for students at WCC. Graduates from the CIS program experience almost 100-percent employment. Her dedication to her students includes beginning the student-run technical help desk on campus as well as securing internship opportunities for real-world experience.

“The impressive growth and success of Whatcom’s CIS program is a direct result of Ms. Sande’s leadership in this high-demand and critically important field,” WCC President Kathi Hiyane-Brown said. “Her vision guided WCC to become one of the nation’s leading community colleges in cybersecurity education. Students always come first with her: she makes herself available to her students for extra help, and has devised several ways to help students understand the often technical and intricate aspects of working with computer networks. We hold Ms. Sande in the highest regard here at Whatcom.”

A lifelong learner, she has integrated cutting-edge technology into the CIS program to support evolving industry needs, such as control systems security, which protects essential infrastructure services such as electricity, water and communications.

Ms. Sande partnered with Western Washington University faculty to develop one of a very few 2+2 programs in the nation, whereby Western accepts all 91 WCC credits – including 61 professional-technical credits – toward a bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity. Her acknowledged expertise was also critical to the College’s successful application to offer a baccalaureate of applied science (BAS) degree in IT networking, which will launch fall 2017.

She received WCC’s Faculty Excellence Award in 2012. In 2014, regional technology industry leaders selected her as the recipient of the Technology Alliance Group for Northwest Washington Technology Influencer Award.

Ms. Sande will be recognized at an Oct. 7 ceremony in New Orleans.  ACCT is a non-profit educational organization of governing boards, representing more than 6,500 elected and appointed trustees who govern over 1,200 community colleges in the United States.

About Whatcom: Whatcom Community College is a regionally and nationally accredited two-year college with an accomplished faculty and staff who serve 11,000 students annually. On its campus in Bellingham, Wash., and through online courses, Whatcom offers transfer and professional-technical degrees as well as basic education, job skills, and community and continuing education classes. Based on student outcomes, the Aspen Institute ranks Whatcom among the top nine community and technical colleges in Washington state and among the top 150 in the nation. For more information, visit

Contact: Mary Vermillion, Whatcom Community College PIO, 360.383.3310,

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