RUSTON, La. - The National Security Agency (NSA) and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have designated Louisiana Tech University as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education.
The designation, which covers the 2014 through 2020 academic years, was awarded in recognition of Louisiana Tech demonstrated ability to meet the increasing demands of the Center of Academic Excellence (CAE) program criteria and to serve the nation in contributing to the protection of the national information infrastructure. Louisiana Tech will be officially recognized in June at the 7th Annual Southeastern Cyber Security Summit in Huntsville, Alabama and at the 19th Annual Colloquium for Information Systems Security Education in Las Vegas, Nevada.
In addition to the CAE in Cyber Defense Education designation, Louisiana Tech is also a NSA/DHS National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Research and a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Research.
Louisiana Tech is one of less than 50 comprehensive research universities in the United States and the only institution in the State of Louisiana to attain these designations.
"These NSA/DHS designations are quite important for both students and faculty," says Dr. Tom Roberts, the Clifford Ray King Endowed Professor of Information Systems and director of Center for Information Assurance at Louisiana Tech. "For students, the designations provide confidence in the programs that they are enrolled in because they are only given after a rigorous review process validating the university's cyber security programs. They also directly provide students with more opportunities for Federal Government and private industry cyber security jobs."
Roberts says students attending CAE IA/CD and CAE-R institutions like Louisiana Tech are also eligible to apply for Department of Defense and National Science Foundation scholarships and grants. On the faculty side, Louisiana Tech faculty and researchers are able to gain additional opportunities to apply for cyber security research funding.
The 2003 National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace and the 2011 International Strategy for Cyberspace address the critical shortage of professionals with cyber security and information assurance skills, and highlights the importance of higher education as a solution to defending America's cyberspace.
The academic institutions awarded CAE designations by the NSA and DHS are recognized leaders in cyber and information assurance with graduates of their programs often developing into cyber experts who help to protect national-security information systems, commercial networks, and critical information infrastructure in both the private and public sectors.
Louisiana Tech's cyber engineering program is designed to prepare graduates with the knowledge and skills in integrating basic computer science, electromagnetic sciences and mathematics with engineering fundamentals to design and develop useful technology while also preparing students to be technical leaders in cyber security with a thorough understanding of the associated security concerns, social and political impacts and ethical consequences.
The Center for Information Assurance, which resides in Louisiana Tech's College of Business, is an interdisciplinary, collaborative, research center between Computer Information Systems in the Department of Management and Information Systems and the School of Accountancy. The Center seeks to foster, support, and conduct research and facilitate training and awareness in information assurance and related areas in business for northwest Louisiana and the nation.