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Mississippi State U Preparing Students for STEM Careers Through Cybersecurity Education Hub

Mississippi State University is working to train more students for careers in computer science, cybersecurity and coding through a new Cybersecurity Education Hub. A collaborative project with Mississippi Coding Academies, the work is funded by a grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) as well as local sources.

At the center of the project is a state-of-the art cyber range simulation environment, which will "enable MSU to recruit under-resourced schools and communities to expose youth and teachers to computing and cybersecurity concepts and principles," according to a news announcement.

"By establishing the Mississippi Cyber Range, a simulation environment that will provide possible cyber-attack scenarios for training, we can propel Mississippi as a leader in the nation for cybersecurity education," said Sarah Lee, principal investigator and MSU associate clinical professor of computer science and engineering, in a statement.

MSU plans to use the cyber range technology for its own cybersecurity undergraduate and graduate programs, as well as provide the opportunity for community colleges and other universities to utilize the cyber range for their own training programs. In addition, the university will offer fee-based access to the cyber range for industry partners that want to train their employees on cybersecurity skills and awareness.

MSU also intends to scale its campus programs to provide distance learning coursework to K-12 students in districts across the state's ARC counties. For example, Columbus Municipal School District is partnering with the university to pilot dual credit cybersecurity education opportunities for its students.

About the Author

Rhea Kelly is editor in chief for Campus Technology, THE Journal, and Spaces4Learning. She can be reached at [email protected].

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