Cybersecurity Programs

The Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity (CYB), the Master of Science in Cybersecurity (CYBM), and the Cybersecurity Graduate Certificates are interdisciplinary programs jointly offered by the Departments of Criminal Justice & Criminology (CJC); Computer Information Systems & Business Analytics (CIS); and Computer Sciences (CS). The Department of CJC houses and administers the Cybersecurity programs. The faculty and staff of each department are listed below.

Department of Criminal Justice & Criminology

Di Jia, Ph.D.

As a former police officer in China, Di Jia, Ph.D., worked in the areas of intelligence analysis, incident command, international police cooperation, crisis management and counter-terrorism. Her expertise guided her to plan and implement security operations for the Beijing Olympic Games in 2018. She received her Ph.D. in Criminal Justice at Sam Houston State University and published several peer-reviewed scholarly articles in journals across the world. Her research and teaching interests include police crisis management, counter-terrorism strategies, cybercrime and cybersecurity.

LiYing Li, Ph.D., Program Director

Dr. LiYing Li is a professor of Criminal Justice and Criminology and the Director of the M.S. in Cybersecurity. She has a Ph.D. in Sociology and M.S. in Demography. Her primary teaching interests are criminal behaviors. Currently, she teaches serial killers, sex offenders, introduction to criminal justice systems and corrections. She has also taught in the past classes such as statistics, research methods, crime mapping and criminological theories.  From the ground up, Dr. Li has played an essential role in creating the B.S. in Cybersecurity program and developing the Cybersecurity curriculum.

Denise Mowder, J.D., Ph.D.

Dr. Mowder is a Professor of the Criminal Justice and Criminology Department at the Metropolitan State University of Denver. She is also an attorney and for over ten years was a prosecutor in Oregon. She specialized in prosecuting cases of domestic violence, child abuse, and sexual assault. Her expertise is in trial practice, investigations and victim advocacy. She earned her Ph.D. in Criminal Justice from Washington State University and her J.D. from Willamette College of Law at Willamette University in Salem Oregon. She received her B.S. at the University of Colorado, Denver. Her research area focuses on the impact of current immigration law and the undocumented battered Latina woman. In particular, does the fear of deportation outweigh the fear of being battered? She is also doing research in the wrongful conviction of the factually innocent.

Destiny Watkins, M.S.Ed., Program Manager

From October 2021 to December 2022, Destiny served as the CJC Academic Advisor in the College of Health & Applied Sciences. Before MSU Denver, she was a substitute teacher in the Shawnee Mission School District in Overland Park, KS. Destiny holds a Bachelor of Science in Sociology from the University of Nebraska at Omaha and a Master of Science in Education with a concentration in Higher Education Administration from the University of Kansas (KU). Destiny supports CYB undergraduate students and CYBM graduate students as well as oversees the admissions and recruitment operations for the M.S. in Cybersecurity Program and the Cybersecurity Graduate Certificates.

Department of Computer Information Systems and Business Analytics

Janos Fustos, Ph.D.

Computer Information Systems professor Dr. Janos T. Fustos earned his doctorate in engineering management, masters in chemical engineering and B.S. in factory operations management. He is involved throughout the University in committees that determine IT strategies, policies and procedures. Dr. Fustos is an expert in computing, having taught web development, web site administration, web programming and information systems security. 

Shane Jackson

Shane Jackson began his military career at Fort Benning, Georgia. He attended officer training school and has worked in European Command and African Command focusing on intelligence and information technology. He has also worked with NATO Partners focusing on support training security operations and incident response. In 2016, he worked for U.S. Army Europe where his position entailed identifying and analyzing trends and patterns, developing “lessons learned” as well as conducting interviews that are used to improve training and relations between us and NATO forces. He has a Master’s degree in computer science from the University of Denver and plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Cyber Security at the University Of Colorado at Denver.

Department of Computer Sciences

Steve Beaty, Ph.D.

Steve Beaty, Ph.D., has an extensive background in both the theoretic and pragmatic aspects of computers and networks. He wrote compilers at Cray Computer, managed a large group of developers and was a software test architect at Hewlett-Packard. He was also the security team lead at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder. At the Metropolitan State University of Denver, Beaty is currently a professor of Computer Science and has served as chair of the Mathematical and Computer Sciences Department and interim vice-president for Information Technology.  

Feng Jiang, Ph.D.

Dr. Feng Jiang got her PhD degree in Computer Engineering from Purdue University. She is currently an assistant professor in Math and Computer Science Department, Metropolitan State University of Denver.

Weiying Zhu, Ph.D.

Before joining MSU Denver in 2011, Dr. Weiying Zhu worked as a software engineer for Lucent Technologies and as a professor at Hampton University. She earned her M.S. in Communication and Information Engineering from Huazhong University of Science and Technology in Wuhan, China before receiving her Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Old Dominion University in Virginia. Dr. Zhu has been honored with a plethora of awards for teaching and research, most recently for the Provost Teaching Innovation Award in 2010. Her expertise in computer science helped build the curriculum for the Cybersecurity degree at MSU Denver.

Read more on Dr. Zhu’s website.