News Flash

News

Posted on: April 1, 2021

Federal grant will support cybersecurity regional plan for Beaufort and Lowcountry

South_Coast_Cyber_Center principalsBeaufort, S.C. (April 1, 2021) – The University of South Carolina Beaufort and partners have received a $1.3 million federal grant to develop programs at the South Coast Cyber Center with the aim of transforming Beaufort and the Lowcountry into a center of cybersecurity expertise.

“This grant will help us to define a pathway to create a strong and diverse cyber economy,” said South Coast Cyber Center Chairman Warren Parker. “We look forward to working with our partners in this unprecedented collaboration.”

The U.S. Department of Defense Office of Local Defense Community Cooperation awarded the grant to the non-profit South Coast Cyber Center, which is a partnership among the University of South Carolina Beaufort (USCB), Technical College of the Lowcountry (TCL), Beaufort Digital Corridor, City of Beaufort, and Beaufort County Economic Development Corporation, along with business leaders.  

USCB Chancellor Dr. Al M. Panu hailed the grant as “a great start toward building a cyber economy by leveraging our strengths as well as our unique partnership with the military here in Beaufort and the region.” TCL President Dr. Richard Gough stated, “As we discuss the grant and what it can do for Beaufort, we have found the cybersecurity community to be very supportive and excited at the prospects.” 

Beaufort Digital Corridor Chairman Kevin Klingler added, This grant will allow us to deploy established technology development processes to attract cyber talent and create cybersecurity startups in Beaufort.”

The South Coast Cyber Center aims to help recent graduates, exiting military personnel, and members of the local community attain high-paying jobs by delivering affordable and relevant cybersecurity education and training. 

Cybersecurity professionals are in demand because protecting computer systems, networks and sensitive data from digital attacks has become a priority for government facilities, and various organizations and businesses. Careers in the cybersecurity industry can pay six figures, and jobs in information security are expected to grow 32 percent for the 10-year period through 2028, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. A shortage of qualified workers left about 300,000 cybersecurity jobs in the U.S. unfulfilled last year, according to industry estimates. 

As the primary grant recipient, USCB will work closely with its co-recipients to develop the South Coast Cyber Center's faculty, curriculum, technology, and facilities. A key goal for the grant is to establish both TCL and USCB as Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense (CAE-CD) through certification of these respective institutions’ two-year and four-year cybersecurity programs by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security. The Beaufort Digital Corridor, a technology incubator in downtown Beaufort, plans to offer cybersecurity mentoring for startups and community bootcamps to teach related skills. 

Local officials see the South Coast Cyber Center as a focal point for advancement in the region.

“This grant will help in attracting and recruiting cyber and technical business and providing transitioning military personnel with opportunities for education and work right here in the Beaufort region,” said John O’Toole, executive director of the Beaufort County Economic Development Corporation.

Beaufort Mayor Stephen Murray, who is vice chairman of the South Coast Cyber Center, looks forward to gathering input from local and state government, educational institutions, military officials, local business leaders and professional cybersecurity organizations.

“The grant will allow work to begin on the community’s first-ever regional cybersecurity strategic plan,” he said. 

Photo: From left: Dr. Rich Gough, president of TCL; Warren Parker, chairman of the South Coast Cyber Center; Mayor Stephen Murray of Beaufort; Dr. Al Panu, chancellor of USCB; John O’Toole, executive director of the  Beaufort County Economic Development Corporation; and Kevin Klingler, chairman of the Beaufort Digital Corridor.

About the South Coast Cyber Center: We are working to establish a world class center of excellence for cybersecurity and cyber defense education, research, innovation, and business. The South Coast Cyber Center will promote the growth of a vibrant ecosystem leveraging the University of South Carolina Beaufort, Technical College of the Lowcountry, the Beaufort Digital Corridor, the Beaufort County Economic Development Corporation, government, and the private sector.

 

Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in News

501 Carteret Street_Hotel_

City launches Downtown Projects page

Posted on: April 5, 2021

City of Beaufort wins budget award

Posted on: March 11, 2021

Mossy Oaks update through March 15

Posted on: March 5, 2021

City launches tree-planting initiative

Posted on: February 23, 2021

Section of Spanish Moss Trail reopens

Posted on: February 10, 2021

Mask ordinance extended through April 9

Posted on: February 10, 2021
Tree pruning utility

FAQ from Dominion on tree-trimming process

Posted on: December 21, 2020

Beaufort Preservation Manual to be updated

Posted on: December 17, 2020

Whitehall subdivision plan moves forward

Posted on: December 17, 2020
Stephen with family Melissa, Genevieve, left, and Josephine

Murray takes the reins in Beaufort

Posted on: December 16, 2020
Mayor Bill headshot

Mayor Billy embarks on next chapter

Posted on: November 30, 2020

How to make your holiday safer!

Posted on: November 12, 2020
PD logo

Police chief search narrows to top 3

Posted on: October 28, 2020

Beaufort narrows search for police chief

Posted on: October 22, 2020
wfp marina

$166K in ATAX grants go to tourism groups

Posted on: September 24, 2020
Cover

Council approves 2020-2022 Strategic Plan

Posted on: September 23, 2020

A video tribute to Sept. 11

Posted on: September 11, 2020