United States Secret Service Awards Champlain College $3.4M for Cybersecurity

The United States Secret Service (USSS) and the National Computer Forensics Institute (NCFI) awarded a multi-million dollar Cyber Range Contract to Champlain College. The contract awards the College $3.4M over five years (2023-2027) to maintain, manage, and utilize its cyber range and curriculum to train law enforcement across the nation in realistic, hands-on digital forensics and prevention of cyber crimes.

For the past five years, Champlain College students and faculty at the Leahy Center for Digital Forensics and Cybersecurity have been working as a subgrantee of George Mason University to develop and build a cyber range – an interactive virtual environment that simulates cybersecurity incidents – and assess the USSS cybersecurity crime curriculum. Now, the College is working directly with NCFI to maintain the cyber range and execute an educational program to train law enforcement in cybersecurity.

Senator Patrick Leahy speaks at a podium at Champlain College
Former Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy recently spoke at the second annual Leahy Cyber Symposium at Champlain College, kicking off Cybersecurity Awareness Month.

“Several years ago I helped introduce the United States Secret Service cyber training division to Champlain College, a leader in cybersecurity and forensics education,” said Patrick Leahy, former Vermont Senator. “I am pleased that they have entered into a formal partnership that will assist the Secret Service in further educating its workforce with cutting-edge cyber tactics and defenses. Champlain once again is showing that it is a national leader in training our cyber workforce.”

In this next iteration, Champlain College will utilize its cyber range to train law enforcement for a variety of scenarios in an effort to bridge the gap between cybersecurity vulnerability and defense. Champlain faculty will manage curriculum development and assessment and students will engage in hands-on, career-centric experiences to help manage and participate in research utilizing the cyber range.

Students are constantly at work in the Leahy Center, providing services such as: digital investigation, end-user support, vulnerability assessments, support to law enforcement agencies, small businesses, non-profits, and municipalities in and around Vermont.

“Champlain College is proud to partner with the National Computer Forensics Institute to develop the next generation of cybersecurity professionals and help law enforcement keep our nation safe,” said Alex Hernandez, President of Champlain College. “This new contract highlights the agency’s confidence in Champlain students, faculty, and the Leahy Center for Digital Forensics and Cybersecurity as a whole.”

Since opening in 2010, the Leahy Center at Champlain College has set the standard for professional digital forensic and cybersecurity best practices from government bodies to local businesses. The world-class, state-of-the-art laboratory provides support, training, research, and other technical services and is trusted by organizations like the Department of Defense, the Department of Justice, and the NCFI.

Champlain once again is showing that it is a national leader in training our cyber workforce.

Former Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy

Champlain is a leader in career-focused learning and one of the top schools in the nation for cybersecurity — ranked #1 in SC Magazine’s top cybersecurity colleges and just named to Forbes 2023 list of Best Master’s in Cybersecurity Online Degrees. This USSS partnership furthers Champlain’s commitment to graduating exceptional cybersecurity professionals who are ready to take on the industry challenges of tomorrow.

Learn more about Champlain’s on-campus cybersecurity and digital forensics degrees, as well as our online bachelor’s, master’s, and graduate certificates.

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