Doctoral student earns NSA scholarship to complete cybersecurity research

Aug 11, 2022 | Engineering and Science, General News, Research, Students

Louisiana Tech University doctoral student and Haughton native Dakota Digilormo has earned a National Centers Academic Excellence (NCAE-C) Cybersecurity Ph.D. Scholarship from the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) to complete his studies in Cyberspace Engineering.

The scholarship is available to doctoral students who are enrolled at NSA-designated NCAE-C universities and who plan to pursue careers in academia after graduation. Its purpose is to support students in programs providing quality education to bolster the United States cybersecurity workforce.

Digilormo says that this scholarship will help fund his current research with Dr. Galen Turner (Academic Director and Maxfield Professor of Mathematics and Statistics) and future collaborations with Dr. Brad Glisson (Associate Professor of Computer Science) as he works to create new solutions to cybersecurity problems that will emerge in the future.

“I want to pursue proactive cybersecurity solutions to help defend our networks from ever-evolving threat actors,” he said. “Too often, current cybersecurity measures are set around reactive approaches rather than proactive. I want to change that. This award will allow me to pursue my research goals by providing me with the time needed to find a cost-effective, proactive cybersecurity solution for modern times.”

Digilormo, a Louisiana Tech Mathematics (M.S. ‘21) and Cyber Engineering (B.S. ‘19) alumnus, also received the Vincent A. Forte Graduate School Fellowship in 2020 -2021 for outstanding academic work.

NSA’s National Cryptologic School manages the NCAE-C program. Member schools have established academic excellence for cybersecurity curricula and offer professional development opportunities for students and faculty along with community outreach on cybersecurity topics.

Federal partners include the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)/National Initiative on Cybersecurity Education (NICE), the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Department of Defense Office of the Chief Information Officer (DoD-CIO), and U.S. Cyber Command (USCYBERCOM).

In addition to this scholarship, an undergraduate student received funding from the DoD’s Cyber Scholarship program, a program to build the skills of U.S. cybersecurity professionals so they can protect the nation in cyberspace.