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CybHER Security Institute

Women in Cybersecurity

The mission of the CybHER Security Institute is to empower, motivate, educate, and change the perception of girls and women in cybersecurity by providing resources for girls from middle school to collegiate programs, and into professional careers.

CybHER allows girls and women to foster positive and encouraging relationships within the cybersecurity industry, through original and curated content. Ultimately, the goal is to increase diversity by introducing more girls to cybersecurity, who will then transition to women in collegiate programs, and highly trained professionals.

CybHER History

CybHER
CybHER was formally created in 2016, though supporting activities have been conducted for over five years. To date, CybHER has reached over 14,000 girls with collective efforts. One of the most notable projects is the GenCyber Girls in CybHER Security Camp. The week-long camp, supported by the National Security Agency (NSA), is the largest girls-only residential camp in the country, hosting over 125 middle school students every year.

Other outreach efforts to middle and high school female students include presentations at STEM events, social media outreach, the Aspirations Award event, parent-support events, and more.

  • Increase knowledge of cybersecurity in K-12 settings
  • Mentor female collegiate students in personal and professional development
  • Conduct cutting-edge research focused on growing the female population in computing, as well as supporting undergraduate and graduate student research related to technology issues and trends
  • Assist women at a collegiate and professional level to network within the state of SD and to be aware of opportunities within the state. Provide mentoring opportunities for entrepreneurship
  • Continue to develop female faculty members through trainings, workshops, mentoring, and assisting with research efforts

K-12 Outreach

  • Develop strategies for K-12 outreach
  • Educate female students in computer-related topics
  • Recruit female students to enter the computing field, specifically within the Beacom College of Computer and Cyber Sciences

 

Collegiate Student Involvement

  • CybHER Club activities
  • Mentoring between faculty, staff, and students as well as student to student
  • Undergraduate and graduate research

 

Professional Women Skills Development

  • Meet-ups are for professional women who support and train each other
  • Re-entry classes are for women that have taken a sabbatical for personal reasons
  • Accelerated cybersecurity training is for women that want to learn more about cybersecurity for professional development

 

CybHER is also focused on collegiate female students developing in these focus areas:

  • Fun and community: leading to support and encourage
  • Professional and personal growth: workshops, speakers, learning opportunities
  • Outreach and service: allowing students to serve and mentor others
  • Networking: growing a network of professional contacts and support

CybHER has focused on building professional relationships across the nation. This has been done through attendance at conferences such as Women in Cyber Security (WiCyS), National Initiative of Cybersecurity Education (NICE), and professional research conferences. We also have relationships with key organizations, such as Facebook and Google.

Pam Rowland

Pam Rowland

Asst. Professor of Computer Science/Cyber Security / Co-Coordinator Center of Excellence / Undergraduate Research Coordinator

Department

The Beacom College of Computer and Cyber Sciences

Education

D.Sc.IS., Dakota State University
M.S., Dakota State University
B.S., South Dakota State University

Biography

Dr. Pam Rowland is the Undergraduate Research Coordinator as well as an Assistant Professor at Dakota State University in Cyber Security, Co-Director of the Center of Excellence for Information Systems, and Director of the CybHER Institute. Pam’s area of research focuses around the gender gap of women in IT. Pam is the Co-PI for the GenCyber: Girls in CybHER Security Camp grant sponsored by the NSA and NSF. The grant allows middle school girls to attend a weeklong residential camp allowing girls to explore an interest in cybersecurity through learning about programming, networking, and security.

Contact

Office Location: East Hall
Phone: (605) 256-5838
Email

Ashley Podhradsky

Ashley Podhradsky

Associate Dean of Beacom College of Computer and Cyber Sciences / Associate Professor of Information Assurance and Forensics

Department

The Beacom College of Computer and Cyber Sciences

Education

D.Sc., Dakota State University
M.S., Dakota State University
B.S., Dakota State University

Biography

Dr. Ashley Podhradsky is an Associate Professor of Digital Forensics and Associate Dean of the Beacom College of Computer and Cyber Sciences at Dakota State University. Ashley is also a member of the First Bank and Trust Board of Directors. Ashley has been an invited speaker at several events and universities including The Pennsylvania State University, Bureau of Justice Affairs, Women in CyberSecurity, InfraGard and DePaul University among others. Her research teams have received over 5.3 M in competitive grants. Current awards include an NSF REU site, NSF NRT program and NSA GenCyber. In addition to her academic and professional work, she has a strong passion for increasing gender diversity in cybersecurity. She is the PI and Camp Director for GenCyber: Girls in CybHER Security, a program sponsored by the NSA. Ashley was the recipient of the EmBe 2017 “Young Woman of Achievement”, The 2017 Merrill Hunter Award for Excellence in Research, 2017 and 2018 New America Cybersecurity Fellow, and is a 2019 American Association for the Advancement of Science IF/THEN Ambassador.

Contact

Office Location: East Hall
Phone: 605-256-5821
Email