NSF Billion Oyster Project video features Pace!

The National Science Foundation (NSF) released a cool new video featuring the Billion Oyster Project (BOP) and Pace University! The Billion Oyster Project is a community of students, teachers, scientists, volunteers, businesses, and schools. Its goal? Getting down and dirty to conduct research and restore the New York Harbor back to its oyster-inhabited glory. With a $5 million grant from the NSF, the project leaders hope to inspire students, specifically middle school students, to help drive the restoration.

At Pace University, the Curriculum and Community Enterprise for Restoration Science (CCERS) and BOP Fellowship trains teachers and educators how to engage students in environmental science and restoration ecology. In 2016, our annual STEM Collaboratory camp teamed up with BOP for an exciting two weeks of research, problem solving, and design thinking. We taught campers HTML, CSS, JavaScript and Google Charts to create a helpful solution.

The NSF video features our very own professor Lauren Birney, the director of Pace University’s STEM Collaboratory. “We’re creating this smart and connected community here in New York City, but then allowing that to grow into other communities,” Birney said. She hopes to build the Billion Oyster Project by continuing to target local middle schools in low-income neighborhoods where students are underrepresented in STEM fields.

Participants aren’t just making new friends, they’re also engaging in STEM activities while restoring the ecosystem in their own backyard! Hands on work teaches students how to measure oysters, test water samples, and other cool activities that keep them active and constantly contributing. The Billion Oyster Project’s website keeps track of teachers, students and volunteers’ work with an interactive map.

Learn more about the 2016 STEM Collaboratory NYC experience, or go further back and check out our Summer Scholars program’s awesome experience with the Billion Oyster Project in 2015!

National Science Foundation awards $2.5 million grant to the Seidenberg School

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The Seidenberg School is to receive a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) totaling two and a half million dollars. The grant is in support of the project “A Multiple Pathway Approach to CyberCorps – Renewal,” which is directed by Dr. Li-Chiou Chen, Dr. Joseph Ryan (the Dyson School), Dr. Darren Hayes, and Prof. Andreea Cotoranu.

This project extends the CyberCorps: Scholarship for Service (SFS) program at Pace University. The Pace CyberCorps program received about $1 million from the NSF between 2010 and 2015, and the new NSF award will bring an additional $2.5 million to advance Pace’s program over the next five years between 2015 and 2020.

The Seidenberg School has been awarded the grant in order to support 3-4 cybersecurity scholars every year, assist student research in cybersecurity, and direct several outreach programs – including running the GenCyber cybersecurity teachers’ workshop which concluded recently. The grant will support eligible cybersecurity scholars who are current Pace students, transfer students from community colleges, and new graduate students from other universities. All scholars are required to fulfill core curriculum requirements in both cybersecurity and mathematics, as well as interdisciplinary curriculum requirements in either criminal justice, business administration, or another discipline. The scholars will also be expected to complete research projects and professional development activities. The interdisciplinary academic preparation will allow the graduates to conduct cybersecurity tasks in a specialty area such as information assurance compliance and auditing, network security administration, digital forensics, etc.

Cybersecurity is one of our key initiatives, and we want to encourage students to learn about this field as it’s not only crucial for securing our digital information over the Internet, but it’s an ever-growing area where employment opportunities abound. The National Science Foundation grant will allow Seidenberg and Pace University to continue its efforts as a center for cybersecurity research and education.

We’d like to congratulate Dr. Chen, Dr. Ryan, Dr. Hayes, and Prof. Cotoranu on this fantastic achievement!