Northern receives $433,000 NSF grant to develop cybersecurity program

Addresses growing need


The College of Engineering and Technology at Northern New Mexico College has been awarded $433,689 by the National Science Foundation to develop a cybersecurity concentration in its ABET-accredited Bachelor in Information Engineering Technology.

The Principal Investigator of the project is Dr. Jorge Crichigno, Chair of the engineering and technology college. The project is the result of several years of preparation that include state-of-the-art laboratory technology and advanced instruction capability in cybersecurity.

Dr. Crichigno's collaborators include Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), the Florida Center for Cybersecurity in Florida, the Western Academy Support and Training Center in California, and the Network Development Group in North Carolina.

"I am very excited that Northern will create a clear career pathway for our students through a cybersecurity concentration embedded into the IET (Information Engineering Technology) program," said Dr. Crichigno.

"Cybersecurity professions are some of the highest paid occupations in the country," he said. "Moreover, professionals in this area are not only in high demand in New Mexico, but also across the country. For example, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of job openings for information security analysts alone will increase by almost 20 percent between 2014 and 2024."