Baylor University Partners with McLennan Community College to Offer Cybersecurity Training Program

Dec. 11, 2018
Mark G. ChildersMark G. Childers, associate vice president for Baylor's Department of Public Safety

Media Contact: Tonya B. Hudson, Baylor University Media and Public Relations, 254-710-4656
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WACO, Texas (Dec. 11, 2018) – Baylor University’s Department of Public Safety and the Office of the Vice Provost for Research has partnered with McLennan Community College and the U.S. Department of Justice to offer a cybersecurity program to law enforcement officers to help combat cyber-related threats.

The Cyber-Security Operational Research and Training (CSORT) Program is a cyber-security focused research, training and education program that links law enforcement, industry and academia. The program is aimed at equipping law enforcement officers to thwart efforts to compromise Internet-connected devices that are critical for financial, business and government operations.

“The goal of CSORT is to partner with MCC utilizing their world-class facilities along with the U.S. Department of Justice, as well as Baylor’s subject matter experts in cybersecurity to provide high-level, applicable cybersecurity training for law enforcement,” said Mark G. Childers, associate vice president of Baylor Department of Public Safety. “Ultimately, one of the medium to long-term plans of CSORT is establishing key partnerships with industry professionals for research opportunities as well as to develop advanced degree opportunities at Baylor in cybersecurity, which is in line with Baylor’s strategic plan, Illuminate.”

As part of CSORT, Baylor will provide subject matter experts (SME’s) in a wide range of cyber-related disciplines including data analytics, network analysis and software systems. These interdisciplinary SME’s include several different academic departments at the doctoral level in School of Engineering & Computer Science as well as the Baylor Law School and Hankamer School of Business.

“This program is unique in that it utilizes education and training to push cutting-edge research and development into the field,” Childers said. “Given the speed at which cyber threats evolve, high-level research into these systems are critical to successful mitigation strategies. Additionally, CSORT’s central location in Texas provides additional opportunities for collaboration, research and training that can be explored and facilitated.”

MCC will provide access to its regional multi-faceted training complex that addresses all levels of law enforcement and first responder education and training. This facility supports the combination of research and development, training, and instructional resources to offer a capacity-building structure in cyber training.

“We provided a cyber-class in August and learned there was a much larger need for this type of training. Identity crime is the number one crime in the United States today. Approximately 41 million Americans who have been victimized by identity theft, according to Bankrate.com,” said Dennis A. Stapleton, coordinator of the Law Enforcement Academy at MCC. “Our initiative goes beyond just combating identity crime. Law enforcement officers need the training and the tools to combat a variety of cyber-related crimes. After each training class, the officers can provide training for the public. Training for our community and training for our law enforcement officers makes for a more informed collaborative effort with any crime.”

“At MCC, we have the classrooms, facilities and instructors. Baylor will assist with additional subject matter experts and research for those classes. Together, we can provide a variety of cyber classes for not only our local law enforcement but to officers all over Texas. I am happy to be a part of this partnership, and look forward to training that will be offered,” Stapleton said.

The first training course will be held from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 13 at MCC’s Emergency Services Education Center (ESEC), 7601 Steinbeck Bend Drive. Subsequent courses will be held in the spring and summer.

ABOUT BAYLOR UNIVERSITY

Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 17,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.

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