UAPB students, professor attend Homeland Security conference

WASHINGTON, DC. – Travis Jones, a Spring 2013 graduate of the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) and Roy Blount, a graduate student in the Masters of Science degree in Computer Science & Technology (CS&T) program at UAPB recently attended the 2013 Department of Homeland Security Career Pathways Conference for Future Homeland Security S&T Professionals. Dr. Sederick C. Rice, an assistant professor of biology and recent graduate of the 14th Annual Little Rock Federal Bureau of Investigation Citizens’ Academy also attended.

Participants received an overview of the structure, culture, and research enterprises of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Undergraduate and graduate students received internship and career path guidance for DHS programs through networking for career success sessions, career fair information exchange events, and on-site interviews. Students also received insight into marketing their transferable skills, developing homeland security experiences while in school, service requirement fulfillment and achieving security clearances, and potential employment opportunities in Research and Development (R&D) workforces in areas of homeland security and domestic preparedness. The trip was sponsored and funded by Dr. Jessie J. Walker, Coordinator of the Computer Science Department at UAPB, through one of his grants entitled Arkansas Cyber Security Community of Practice (ACS-CP), Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Award.

The Department of Homeland Security has a vital mission: to secure the nation from the many threats we face. This requires the dedication of more than 240,000 employees in jobs that range from aviation and border security to emergency response, from cyber security analyst to chemical facility inspector. Their ultimate goal and duty is to keep America safe.

The Computer Science program at UAPB has undertaken several ongoing projects to modernize its curriculum and faculty to ensure undergraduates students enrolled in the program are exposed to the many facets of Computer Science.  The ACS-CP project represents such efforts; it allows an undergraduate in any STEM major to obtain a minor in cyber security. It is one of only two such cyber security minors at an HBCU within the United States. The ACS-CP project also provides students with unique research-oriented internship opportunities at DHS Centers of Excellence (https://www.dhs.gov/st-centers-excellence). 

For more information about the Computer Science program at UAPB, call (870)575-7089.

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