Home Civilian based defense Two professors receive NSA cyber scholarship – The GW Hatchet

Two professors receive NSA cyber scholarship – The GW Hatchet


Two cybersecurity professors received a scholarship from the Ministry of Defense for the 2021-2022 academic year to provide students with the opportunity to work for the DOD against growing threats to information security.

The Department of Defense Cybersecurity Scholarship Program grant was awarded to Rachelle Heller, a research professor in engineering, and Costis Toregas, director of GW’s Cyber ​​Security and Privacy Research Institute, which promotes the computer security and privacy research. The grant covers tuition, book fees, and a stipend ranging from $ 25,000 to $ 30,000 for a degree in a cyber-related field, according to the University’s grant page.

Heller, the principal investigator of the CyberCorps scholarship program, said federal government agencies like the National Security Agency will employ students for each year they participate in the scholarship program.

“We are delighted to be a part of this program which provides wonderful scholarship opportunities for our students and at the same time provides highly qualified cybersecurity experts to the US government to help deter cybersecurity threats and keep our country safe.” , Heller said in an email. .

Alice Smitley, director of the DOD’s cyber scholarship program, said students eligible for the grant must be U.S. citizens, maintain a GPA above 3.2 and declare a major in a scientific, technical or managerial discipline. She said accepted students who participate in the program can work in any cybermission within DOD during a summer internship or the year after graduation.

The goals of the DoD Cybersecurity Scholarship Program (DoD CySp) are to promote higher education in all disciplines of cybersecurity and improve the department’s ability to recruit and retain cybersecurity specialists. and computing, ”Smitley said in an email.

Smitley said the National Security Agency administers the grant, which the DoD funds. She said that once the students graduate, they will work for a number of offices and agencies within the DOD, such as the NSA.

“Students can be placed in a variety of positions supporting the cyber mission of the selected DoD agency / component,” said Smitley. “Upon graduation, students can be placed in any cyber mission within the DoD, which includes, but is not limited to, the NSA.”

The CySp scholarships are part of the CyberCorps scholarship program at the University of the Cyber ​​Security and Privacy Research Institute, which is part of the School of Engineering and Applied Science.

Costis Toregas, director of CSPRI, declined multiple requests for comment.

The University selects the applicants to send to the DOD, which accepts and then assigns the students according to the needs of the department. Smitley said the school only receives the money once a student is selected for the scholarship.

She said scholarship students will also receive travel assistance to attend a web conference of their choice.

Smitley said students can participate in the program for up to five years as undergraduate and graduate students.

Students who received this scholarship went on to work for public sector employers like the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, as well as private institutions like the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Smitley said the scholarship students would help DOD augment its staff with cybersecurity expertise.

“The DoD Cybersecurity Scholarship Program increases the number of DoD military and civilian personnel with cybersecurity expertise and ultimately improves the country’s cyber posture,” said Smitley .

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