Center for Academic Excellence 2-Year
CSSIA site

Becoming a Center of Academic Excellence 2-Year (CAE2Y) is a new reality and opportunity for community colleges.  This institutional award is established by the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), with the support of the National Science Foundation (NSF) and CyberWatch.  Community colleges that have established a robust information assurance (IA) program, and have successfully mapped their security courses to two of the Committee on National Security Systems training standards, CNSS 4011 and one other, are now eligible to apply for the coveted status of CAE2Y.

Only six community colleges became CAE2Y institutions in 2010, the first year of the program.  The benefits to a CAE2Y institution are significant:  recognition of the quality of the program by industry, professional associations, and academe; seamless program articulation with CAE universities; better job placement and/or transfer opportunities for students; opportunities for collaboration with other CAE2Y and CAE institutions; improved institutional standing in the local, regional, and professional community; opportunities for institutional/program marketing; and monetary support.

Community colleges can be assisted in their quest to map their courses to the CNSS standards by one of the three NSF supported ATE centers devoted to information assurance education: CyberWatch at Prince George’s Community College, Maryland; Center for Systems Security and Information Assurance (CSSIA) at Moraine Valley Community College, Illinois; and Cyber Security Education Consortium (CSEC) at the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Not coincidentally, every one of the six CAE2Y institutions designated in 2010 is affiliated with one of these centers. CyberWatch has also assumed a special leadership role in developing and promoting the CAE2Y Program, and in mentoring 2-year institutions who wish to apply.

The six successful CAE2Y applicants in 2010 are as follows. (Hyperlinks link to the institution's CAE2Y application package, which you may find instructive, should your institution wish to apply):

Seven institutions were successful in achieving CAE2Y status in 2011. (Hyperlinks link to the institution's CAE2Y application package, which you may find instructive should your institution wish to apply):

2012 Recipients of the CAE2Y designation:

The CAE2Y designation represents an expansion of the Centers for Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education (CAE/IAE) program previously established for four-year schools. This program recognizes excellent academic education programs (CAE) and excellent research programs (CAE-R).

The following CyberWatch member institutions have been designated as National Centers of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education: