The National Security Agency (NSA) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has designated Louisiana Tech University as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Research from the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security for academic years 2012 through 2017.
The designation is the nation's premier academic certification for cybersecurity research and is the second such honor that Louisiana Tech has received from the NSA and DHS. Last year, Louisiana Tech was designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education.
Louisiana Tech is one of only 35 comprehensive research universities in the nation and the only university in the State of Louisiana to attain both designations.
"These designations of excellence are validation of the great effort that has been placed on information assurance and cybersecurity at Louisiana Tech," said Dr. Tom Roberts, director of Louisiana Tech's Center for Information Assurance. "The teaching and research efforts at Tech across multiple colleges is amazing. The College of Engineering and Science is developing some amazing cyber programs and conducting cutting edge research in cybersecurity while the College of Business has its information assurance program and is conducting some exciting operational organizational research in cybersecurity.
"The impact is pretty amazing given that the academic programs range from K-12 with the Cyber Discovery program to doctoral programs in both colleges."
The academic institutions honored by the NSA and DHS are recognized leaders in information assurance and cybersecurity with graduates of their programs often developing into cyber experts who help to protect national-security information systems, commercial networks, and critical information infrastructure in both the private and public sectors.
"Dr. Roberts, Dean James Lumpkin and the College of Business are to be commended for their leadership in achievement of this distinction," said Dr. Les Guice, vice president for research and development at Louisiana Tech. "It represents the strong commitment to cyber research and education by our faculty. This designation will enable the institution to capitalize upon other grants and allow our faculty to provide more support for the nation in this critical area of national security."
The NSA and DHS jointly sponsor the National Centers of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education and Research programs. The goal of these programs is to reduce vulnerability in the national information infrastructure by promoting higher education and research in information assurance and producing a growing number of professionals with information assurance expertise in various disciplines.
"Without a doubt, these designations put Louisiana Tech among the nation's leaders in information assurance and cybersecurity, and they offer great opportunities for our current and future students," Roberts said. "It is also satisfying that we are helping to address the nation's critical shortage of professionals with these skills in cyberspace."