Vice President Joe Biden (seated) took a first-hand look at Norfolk State University students’ skills and knowledge in stopping cyber attacks during a visit on campus, Jan. 15. Biden, along with Department of Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, was at Norfolk State University to hold a round-table discussion on building a cybersecurity workforce and to announce a $25-million grant to support cybersecurity education. A new online master’s program in Cybersecurity begins fall 2015. The University has been recognized by the National Security Agency and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security as a National Center of Excellence in Information Assurance Education since 2009 and designated as Center of Excellence in Cyber Defense Education through 2020.
Biden said that Norfolk State University is leading a 13-member cybersecurity consortium consisting of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), the Department of Energy National Laboratories and the Charleston County School District in South Carolina. “The demand for cybersecurity professionals is growing 12 times faster than the rest of the U.S. job market,” said Biden. But he pointed out that there is a dire need for African-Americans, women and other minorities to enter the profession. “Norfolk State, you are at the vanguard here,” he told the students. NSU offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees in computer science with a concentration in information assurance.
Norfolk State University is the lead institution in a $25-million effort to educate, train and develop the nation’s next generation of cybersecurity professionals. The U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration awarded the grant to the University as part of its efforts to expand and diversify the cybersecurity workforce, part of multi-pronged initiative advanced by President Barack Obama. The grant aims to foster partnerships between HBCUs, federal laboratories, and students interested in science, technology, engineering and math as early as kindergarten. NSU leads a 13-member consortium of the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Department of Energy National Laboratories, and the Charleston County School District in South Carolina. “This grant is a prime example of how Norfolk State University is forging onward as an institution,” said Interim President Eddie N. Moore Jr. “As the world becomes more dependent on technology and information is shared digitally, the threat of online hackers and data breaches are daily realities. Norfolk State is poised to provide the expertise in cybersecurity sought by many employers.” NSU and its partners will use the funds, which will be distributed over a five-year period, for training students and faculty; course development; research in cybersecurity fields; and expanding cybersecurity programs. Norfolk State University – An Equal Opportunity Employer Photo