Virginia Tech establishes new cyber security center with National Science Foundation grant.

General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems, a leading provider of cyber security solutions to the U.S. Departments of Homeland Security and Defense, has joined with Virginia Tech as an affiliate of the newest Security and Software Engineering Research Center (S2ERC), founded with support from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The NSF established the S2ERC program 25 years ago as the Industry & University Cooperative Research Center (I/UCRC) program dedicated to software engineering and recently re-chartered the center with an added focus on security.

The National Science Foundation awarded Virginia Tech a five-year grant to support the center, which includes the participation of industry and academia. The new cyber security site becomes the third primary S2ERC location in the country. The two other primary site locations are Ball State University and Iowa State University Tech.

"It is vital to America's security that industry remains a prominent contributor in the education and training of our future cyber leaders," said Lou Von Thaer, president, General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems. "The strides we make in cyber security benefit not only industry, but protect our national security as well. That is why we are committed to helping Virginia Tech create and sustain this center as a nexus for collaborative cyber security research."

National Science Foundation I/UCRC programs provide the means to leverage research and development investments with multi-university centers renowned for their innovative research capabilities. To colleges and universities with research capabilities, the NSF I/UCRC program provides opportunities to partner with other leading institutions to conduct industrially relevant research, receive seed funding and recognition as a NSF research center with access to professional resources and guidance aimed towards enhancing global competitiveness.

"Partnering with one of the leading engineering institutions in the country, we expect this center for cyber research to improve our customers mission capability and strengthen their defenses on the Internet," said John Jolly, vice president and general manager of General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems Cyber Systems division. "Joining this research initiative with Virginia Tech allows us to collaborate with some of the brightest minds in the country to leverage our experience defending government networks and investigating sophisticated network breaches, to drive innovation for our customers."

Through S2ERC, researchers gain access to real-world data and experienced practitioners who can validate their models and guide their research. Affiliate companies gain by having immediate access to innovative research that is often outside areas they might normally support. Each affiliate can appoint their research dollars to a project that will address a technical need in their company, and can request research proposals addressing particular problems of interest.

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