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Grant from National Science Foundation to Fund Cyber Security Scholarships at Johnson C. Smith University

Charlotte, N.C. (September 13, 2012) - The Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) College at Johnson C. Smith University, in partnership with the College of Computing and Informatics at UNC-Charlotte, has been awarded the National Science Foundation Cyber Corp.: Scholarship for Service grant. Johnson C. Smith University will receive $339,189 for the five-year grant, which will provide support for students to study in the field of cyber security.

The Scholarship for Service is designed to increase and strengthen the cadre of federal information assurance professionals that protect the government's critical information infrastructure. This program provides scholarships that fully fund the typical costs that students pay for books, tuition, room and board while attending Johnson C. Smith University. In addition, students will receive an annual stipend of $20,000.

“The U.S. loses approximately $500 billion a year because of cyber security glitches, including the loss of intellectual property and physical damage,” said Dr. Magdy Attia, founding dean of the College of STEM at Johnson C. Smith University. “The College of STEM’s emphasis on undergraduate applied research in market-driven areas, such as cyber security, is designed to prepare students for jobs or graduate school if they choose.”

Dr. Hang Chen, chair of the Computer Science and Engineering Department, heads the cyber security program at Johnson C. Smith University. She also leads the Duke Energy-funded Cultivating Women in Technology Program, which seeks to broaden participation and increase retention of women and minority students in computing disciplines. Her efforts have helped to raise the number of female students who have chosen a STEM-related major. Half of the students in the STEM College are female, which is significantly higher than the national average of 12 to 15 percent.

The cyber security program at Johnson C. Smith University is housed in the recently completed undergraduate research center which includes a laboratory, software, summer research programs.

Founded in 1867, Johnson C. Smith University is the premier independent urban liberal arts university located in the heart of Charlotte, N.C. It offers a progressive liberal arts curriculum with 23 fields of study to more than 1,600 students. The University prepares students for success through excellent academic programs with a focus on servant leadership, civic engagement and global responsibility.          


Jennifer Gaskins
Assistant Director of Communications and Marketing

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