Clark State Community College will receive a $620,000 grant from the Department of Defense - Office of Economic Adjustment to further develop CyberSecurity education programming. The funds are available immediately.
The grant - Developing Regional Economic Alliances and Methods (DREAMs-DICE) for Delivering Intensive Cybersecurity Education – aims to address the demand for a cybersecurity workforce primarily in the aerospace and defense industry, both civilian and military sectors. In addition, the grant will benefit the many other industries that are in support of this industry in the region.
Clark State has a CyberSecurity/Information Assurance program, which was approved by the Ohio Board of Regents in 2008. This program is an Associate of Applied Science degree that aligns itself with several IT industry certifications.
“The Clark State portion of the grant focuses on developing and delivering cybersecurity education courses,” said Dan Heighton, professor in the Business and Applied Technologies Division at Clark State. “We are developing and enhancing six cybersecurity courses and will begin to offer them next school year.”
Heighton said Clark State is a sub-awardee to Southwestern Ohio Council for Higher Education (SOCHE) who submitted the grant along with Wright State University. It is an 18-month grant.
Clark State is a member of Cin-Day Cyber, a regional collaborative initiative engaging higher education and industry groups around cybersecurity. Partners also include: SOCHE, University of Dayton, Wright State University, University of Cincinnati, Air Force Institute of Technology and Sinclair Community College.
The Cin-Day Cyber initiative started in 2015, when several colleges and universities approached SOCHE with the goal of engaging other regional colleges and universities in an initiative to inventory educational resources, promote collaboration with industry and establish the Cincinnati-Dayton region as a national leader in cybersecurity education.
Clark State was recognized as a Department of Homeland Security and National Security Agency Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber-Defense (CAE-2y) in 2017. The CAE-2y is an institutional – rather than programmatic – designation.
Over the last nine years, Clark State has been awarded three National Science Foundation grants focusing exclusively on cybersecurity. These grants have focused on academic curriculum design, faculty training, student internships and academic course development.
Clark State, in association with SOCHE, will establish collaborations with local businesses and government (military and non-military) entities with a focus on establishing a pipeline of skilled cybersecurity workers. These collaborations will consist of cybersecurity skill-building activities that will include training modules/classes and cybersecurity certifications.