Today@Sam Article

Computer Science Department Awarded Grant Funding For Scholarships

Jan. 19, 2023
SHSU Media Contact: Mikah Boyd

The Department of Computer Science at Sam Houston State University was awarded $2.8 million by the National Science Foundation CyberCorps Scholarship for Service in Interdisciplinary Cyber Security and Cyber Forensics.

Receiving the grant was part of the department’s plan to attain three of the top cybersecurity grants, a goal which has now been achieved. Bing Zhou, associate professor and department chair for computer science expressed how the grant funding can provide more opportunities for students.

“This grant will have a significant impact for our programs and students, the Department of Computer Science will be seeking candidates over the coming five years, we will train 20 outstanding students to be the next generation of cybersecurity professionals to work for federal, state, local and tribal governments,” Zhou said. “Our students, including those without the scholarship for service will now have access to internship, job and other opportunities and resources brought in by this distinguished program among only 98 schools across the nation.” IMG_8372[8] copy

On top of this recognition from the NSF, SHSU was named a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security. Zhou credited support from several campus departments during an on-campus visit for their success in securing the funding on their second try.

“This grant will allow us to support and prepare our cybersecurity majors going into the government workforce,” Zhou said. “A majority of the fund will be used to pay student stipend, tuition, laptop, textbooks and research related activities in the next five years.”

Zhou is already seeing the benefits of NSF’s Scholarship for Service and recently received correspondence from an alumnus who is now a leader in the technology division branch of FDIC, notifying her of the organization’s recruitment of CyberCorps students.

SHSU is now one of eight Texas universities that are a part of this program and one of four Texas universities that has received three top cybersecurity awards.

“This is a game changer for SHSU, it will help with university reputation and visibility, boost enrollment, improve retention rates, students’ job placement and much more,” Zhou said.

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Award No. 2234710.Any opinions, findings and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

Zhou recognizes her fellow members of the performance improvement team for their efforts and commitment to success; Qingzhong Liu (Co-Principal Investigator), Min Kyung An (Co-Principal Investigator), Narasimha Shashidhar (Co-Principal Investigator), Cihan Varol (Co-Principal Investigator), Li-Jen Lester (Senior Personnel), Jorn Yu (Senior Personnel) andDavid Stender (Senior Personnel).

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