NSA/DHS National Centers of Academic Excellence Certificate Presentation June 8th, 2016

University of Massachusetts Lowell (UMass Lowell) accepted its National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Research (CAE-R) designation on June 8th, 2016 at Davidson Space and Rocket Center, Huntsville AL. The event was hosted at National Cyber Summit (NCS) 2016. Dr. Xinwen Fu led the application for the CAE-R designation and the application was approved in October 2016. The designation was a team effort from all members of Center for Internet Security and Forensics Education and Research (iSAFER), University of Massachusetts Lowell.

We are happy to be able to meet the increasing demands of the program criteria and will serve the nation well in contributing to the protection of the National Information Infrastructure. The Presidents’ National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace, 14 February 2003 and the International Strategy for Cyberspace, May 2011, addresses the critical shortage of professionals with these skills and highlights the importance of higher education as a solution to defending America’s cyberspace. “Like all nations, the United States has a compelling interest in defending its vital national assets, as well as our core principles and values, and we are committed to defending against those who would attempt to impede our ability to do so.” Education is the key to promoting these ideas.

Here are some selected criteria that have to be met in order to be designated as CAE-R:
1. The institute must be a research university and performs intensive cyber defense (CD) research, education, service and outreach. The Carnegie Foundation Basic Classification system lists University of Massachusetts Lowell as a RU/H (high research activity) university.
2. The institute must have cybersecurity education programs that meet the requirements of NSA and DHS. UMass Lowell has both undergraduate and graduate cybersecurity courses fulfilling the requirements.
3. The institute must produces enough graduate students on CD research. Each year, at least three Ph.D students must enroll in the CD program on average. At least three Ph.D students have graduated in the last five years.
4. Members of the university cybersecurity center (iSAFER in our case) must have at least ten research projects related to cyber defense. iSAFER members are fantastic secure grants!
We are thrilled to have met all the requirements and get designated as a CAE-R.

Suzanne Spaulding, Jie Wang, Xiwnen Fu, Dr. Leonard (Len) Reinsfelder Suzanne Spaulding, Jie Wang, Xiwnen Fu, Dr. Leonard (Len) Reinsfelder

From left to right:

Suzanne Spaulding Under Secretary, National Protection and Programs Directorate, Department of Homeland Security
Jie Wang Professor, Chair, Department of Computer Science, UMass Lowell
Xinwen Fu Associate Professor, Department of Computer Science, Point of Contact of CAE-R, UMass Lowell
Dr. Leonard (Len) Reinsfelder Associate Director, Educations and Training Program, National Cryptologic School Commandant