UA is one of 84 colleges and universities nationwide selected as part of the new Academic Engagement Network that will strengthen relationships and communication among the institutions and Cyber Command.
“This is a great opportunity for The University of Alabama to partner with a leader in the cyber security workforce,” said Dr. Travis Atkison, associate professor of computer science and director of the cyber security program in the College of Engineering. “Through this Academic Engagement Network with CYBERCOM, we can show our students career paths that build on what they learn here to create real solutions to challenging problems.”
Inclusion in the national network builds on the momentum at UA in recruiting and educating the next generation of cyber security professionals who can come from programs across campus including computer science, cyber security, criminology and criminal justice, and management information systems.
In 2014, UA was designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Research by the National Security Agency, and two years ago, UA began formally offering a bachelor’s degree in cyber security. The University is also part of the CyberCorps Scholarship for Service program, a scholarship and internship program supported by the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security designed to recruit and train the next generation of cyber security professionals.
“We teach students problem-solving skills that translate to a lot of different career paths, and the exposure the students gain through this partnership with CYBERCOM will help them be successful now and after graduation.”
“There are a lot of positives and room for growth in the areas of cyber security,” Atkison said. “We teach students problem-solving skills that translate to a lot of different career paths, and the exposure the students gain through this partnership with CYBERCOM will help them be successful now and after graduation.”
Cyber Command will use the network to support and enhance future workforce, applied cyber research, applied analytics and strategic issues. These four primary lines of effort are intended to serve as an investment in creating a robust and accessible pool of qualified cyber professionals. With its academic partners, Cyber Command plans to shape the cyber workforce while supporting its mission.
The Academic Excellence Network extends partnerships to institutions through collaboration and access to Cyber Command through scheduled events and engagements with command staff, the Cyber National Mission Force and the four component commands.
Member institutions will receive communications about changes in the cyberspace domain that may impact their students, programs, research and partnerships. Benefits in the network also include invitations for exclusive webinars about the Cyber Command’s most pressing technical and non-technical problems, information on how to benefit from key defense programs that impact cyberspace, and access to guest lecturers from Cyber Command on cyberspace strategy, policy, law, innovation and workforce issues.
The University of Alabama, part of The University of Alabama System, is the state’s flagship university. UA shapes a better world through its teaching, research and service. With a global reputation for excellence, UA provides an inclusive, forward-thinking environment and nearly 200 degree programs on a beautiful, student-centered campus. A leader in cutting-edge research, UA advances discovery, creative inquiry and knowledge through more than 30 research centers. As the state’s largest higher education institution, UA drives economic growth in Alabama and beyond.