This project is expanding the capacity of the Iowa State University (ISU) SFS Cyber Corps program. Designated by the National Security Agency as a charter Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education, ISU further recognizes the importance of the information assurance (IA) field by supporting a new IA Center on campus. Through this project, ISU is continuing participation in the NSF SFS program. IA education and research faculty from the Departments of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Computer Science, Political Science, Mathematics, Educational Leadership, and Logistics, Operations, and Management Information Systems are leading the interdisciplinary Cyber Corps program. Thirty students, comprising two cohort groups of five undergraduate and 10 graduate students, are working closely with the faculty to receive IA training, conduct research, and develop as leaders and team members. Undergraduate students are completing IA graduate courses as electives during the junior and senior years and are involved in the research of the ISU IA Center, thus augmenting their B.S. degrees with the skills needed to contribute more meaningfully to the IA profession. Graduate students are completing IA courses and developing deeper problem-solving skills through more in-depth research efforts and involvement with major professors. All students are participating with their respective cohorts for two full years in the unique and critical component of the ISU SFS program: leadership, teamwork and professionalism development.
Through the expanded SFS program, ISU is developing a year-round recruiting plan with special emphasis on increasing the number of participants from underrepresented groups, further enhancing the selection process, supporting the strong student cohort experience, increasing the scope of mentoring for students, more systematically involving all students in IA research, and employing additional measures of program success.
Intellectual Merit. The ISU SFS program is providing the federal workforce with new professionals who have the capacity to address the problems of securing critical federal information infrastructure in innovative ways, preparing professionals to serve as worthy team members and leaders, contributing to the IA knowledge base by enhancing several ISU research programs that address important issues including intrusion detection systems, network security, data privacy and security, dependable systems and networks, and security policy and commerce, and enhancing educational capacity of the IA security education programs.
Broader Impact. The ISU SFS program is continuing to benefit society by providing the federal workforce with increased numbers of IA professionals who apply best practices in their technical fields and who engage in lifelong technical, intellectual, leadership and citizenship development. Involving students in research projects and immersing them in leadership, teamwork and professional development throughout their entire Cyber Corps experience is providing the opportunity for students to have a broader impact on society before leaving the university through required IA service-learning projects.