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Griffiss Institute Announces Awardees in New Program That Addresses Urgent Need to Grow Cybersecurity Workforce

VICEROY

ROME, NY — The Griffiss Institute, in partnership with the Office of the Undersecretary of Defense and the Air Force Research Laboratory Information Directorate, is pleased to announce award recipients for the first ever Virtual Institutes for Cyber and Electromagnetic Spectrum Research and Employ (VICEROY) Program

Washington State University, Mississippi State University and the University of Detroit Mercy will each lead a consortium of regionally based institutions to create virtual institutes that are focused on the development of foundational expertise in critical cyber operational skills for future military and civilian leaders. 

The need to fill the cyber workforce has become urgent. Currently in the United States, there are nearly 360,000 cyber related positions going unfilled, according to a survey by (ISC)2, an international nonprofit that offers cybersecurity training and certification programs. Across the globe, the gap gets even larger at more than 3 million job openings.

“The need is demonstrable for the United States to act with urgency, and with intention, to build a more diverse and inclusive STEM pipeline,” says Heather Hage, President and CEO of the Griffiss Institute. “VICEROY is perfectly timed, and squarely focused, to elevate the future cyber workforce and drive innovation to tackle this critical need. The Griffiss Institute is extraordinarily proud to bring VICEROY to life in partnership with the Office of the Undersecretary of Defense and the outstanding academic institutions selected to lead this critical initiative.”

Department of Defense (DoD), much like private industry, has a critical need for these workers, and the VICEROY Program is designed to help close the workforce gap.

Washington State University will receive $1.5 million to establish the Northwest Virtual Institute for Cybersecurity Education and Research (CySER) Program; the University of Detroit Mercy will get $1.12 million to create the Metro-Detroit Regional Vehicle Cybersecurity Institute; and Mississippi State University will be given $1.5 million to partner with Augusta University and Clark Atlanta University in Georgia to focus on the areas of wireless engineering, software reverse engineering and digital forensics.

Funding for these programs is slated to last two years with the expectation they become self-sufficient and self-funding afterward.

The VICEROY Program is currently accepting applications under a new round of funding. To learn more and to apply, go to SAM.gov.

About VICEROY

Authorized by the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019, and with funding provided by the Office of the Secretary of Defense, and contract management executed by the Griffiss Institute, the VICEROY Program is intended to increase the quantity and quality of U.S. students who possess job-ready Department of Defense cybersecurity skills upon graduation. The approach is to augment traditional college curricula by providing hands-on, experiential learning and internship opportunities that are uniquely tailored to match the workforce demands of the Armed Services, DoD and Defense Industrial Base partners.

Contact with questions: Jennifer McCullough, Project Analyst, Griffiss Institute; [email protected]

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