Homeland security fellowships received by students

Jeffrey Blanchard, a graduate student in mathematics in Arts & Sciences, and Shannon Lieberg, a senior in computer science and engineering, are two of 101 recipients of scholarships under the new Homeland Security Scholars and Fellows Program.

This educational program is administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The initiative will support the development and mentoring of the next generation of scientists as they study ways to prevent terrorist attacks within the United States, reduce America’s vulnerability to terrorism and minimize the damage and recovery efforts from attacks that occur.

“We are extremely pleased to welcome these individuals as part of our team to explore the future scientific possibilities for protecting our nation against terrorism,” said Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge.

The department received nearly 2,500 applications for review by more than 100 experts selected from a variety of fields, including physical, biological, social and behavioral sciences, engineering, mathematics and computer science.

The Homeland Scholars and Fellows Program is open to all U.S. students interested in pursuing scientific and technological innovations that can be applied to the homeland security mission.

Students from engineering disciplines constituted about one-third of the awards, followed by computer science, math, psychology and social sciences. Men and women were almost equally represented as award recipients. The students have begun their programs this fall.

Funding for this program will be up to $2 million for fiscal year 2003. In addition, the department has proposed increasing its funding for fiscal year 2004, with a commitment to increase the number of scholarship and fellowship awards for next year.

The Homeland Security Scholars and Fellows Program will also be expanded to provide internships and specialized fellowships for students and faculty to further their knowledge of homeland security through short- and long-term exchanges at laboratories, facilities and organizations throughout the homeland security complex.