TU receives $2.79 million to train cyber corps


Tuesday, May 22nd 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6



TULSA, Okla. (AP) _ The University of Tulsa will become one of six training centers for a new corps of computer experts who will help defend the nation against cyber terrorists, officials announced Tuesday.

The university will receive a $2.79 million grant under the National Science Foundation's Federal Cyber Service Initiative.

The grant will pay for the training of 36 students destined for federal service in preventing computer crime.

``The goal is to produce a cadre of professionals with solid backgrounds in computer science, specializations in computer security and a commitment to federal service,'' said Sujeet Shenoi, a computer science professor who will help lead Tulsa's program.

TU will enroll 12 students in the program each year for three years. The grant will cover tuition, room and board, travel to conferences and provide a monthly stipend for the students.

After one year of training, students will complete a summer internship in a federal agency. Shenoi expects that most of the students will work as information assurance specialists for the federal government upon graduation.

The shortage of computer security experts within the federal government is projected to exceed 37,000 within the next six years, he said.

``Many federal agencies _ the IRS, Department of Commerce _ desperately need trained people to protect their operations,'' he said.

The program is open to college juniors or first-year graduate students beginning this fall. The curriculum will be a mix of information security and computer science, with an emphasis on computer law and policy issues. Graduates will leave with three federal-level computer security certificates.

University of Tulsa teams will do some outreach work with the Oklahoma City National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism.

Other universities receiving the grants are Iowa State, Purdue, the University of Idaho, Carnegie Mellon and the Naval Postgraduate School.