U.S. Cyber Command (CYBERCOM) will officially announce its newest Academic Engagement Network (AEN) college and university partners from 34 states and the District of Columbia this week.
CYBERCOM’s Executive Director David Frederick will host a virtual event formally inviting the command’s newest partners into the Academic Engagement Network on Thursday, January 6, 2022. During the event, partners will receive details on how the command intends to implement the program over the next nine months. They will also receive details on specific programs and plans available to faculty and students.
In total 84 colleges and universities were selected to partner with the command and components. Partners consist of 69 universities, 13 community colleges, nine minority serving institutions, four military service academies, and four military war and staff colleges.
“Cyber Command’s goal for the AEN is to strengthen our relationships and communication with these participating institutions,” said Frederick. “This will improve and sustain our efforts to meet cyberspace educational requirements and workforce needs.”
The command intends to use the AEN to support and enhance four primary lines of effort (LOE): future workforce, applied cyber research, applied analytics, and strategic issues. These LOEs are intended to serve as an investment in creating a robust and accessible pool of qualified cyber professionals. With our academic partners, we can shape our cyber workforce while supporting the command’s mission.
Strong partnerships supported by talented and skilled people are vital to remain agile and ready in the cyber domain. The AEN extends partnerships to institutions through collaboration and access to CYBERCOM via scheduled events and engagements with command staff, the Cyber National Mission Force, and our four component commands.
Frederick added that this network will further enable us to shape and enhance cyber-focused innovation with partnerships and support the DoD’s ongoing strategic dialogue on cyberspace.
The next round of partner applications will start accepting submissions on July 1, 2022. For more information about CYBERCOM’s AEN program, interested participants can visit: https://www.cybercom.mil/Partnerships-and-Outreach/Academic-Engagement/.
The network leveraged various existing relationships with institutions of higher education as part of our CYBERCOM’s overall Academic Engagement Strategy.
Since 2012, the command has hosted more than 105 interns from the U.S. military service academies. Beginning in 2020, more than 25 civilian summer college interns and recent graduates also participated in other command internship programs. Additionally, high school juniors, seniors, and undergraduate students have participated in programs and projects via the command’s partnership with DreamPort.