GLEN BURNIE, MD, November 16, 2022 –The National Cryptologic Foundation (NCF) is pleased to announce a major charitable contribution of $3 million from the Verstandig Family Foundation to support, sustain, and expand K-12 cybersecurity education and further the goal of a public-private partnership between the NCF and National Security Agency (NSA).

While the demand for highly educated and trained cyber professionals is over 700 thousand, the number of individuals prepared to fill these positions is severely lacking. In an NSA statement released on November 5, 2021, the Agency announced that it will work with the NCF to grow cyber strength across the nation, focusing on cyber and science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education and building deeper pipelines for skill sets to meet our nationwide demand for expertise in these fields.

“Recruiting and retaining next generation talent are among our top priorities at the NSA,” said General Paul M. Nakasone, Commander, U.S. Cyber Command and Director, NSA/Chief, CSS. “Relationships to enhance our hiring efforts are fundamental to our ability to consistently provide world class foreign intelligence and cybersecurity expertise.”

This contribution will also support the public-private partnership between NSA and the NCF through the convening of senior government officials, experts in industry and academia, and broader private sector stakeholders that will advance increasing awareness, knowledge, and a better understanding of the cyber landscape and its multifaceted aspects that are of critical importance.

“We are grateful for the continued generosity of the Verstandig Family Foundation by supporting the NCFs growing education program,” said Laura Nelson, President and CEO of the NCF. “This donation will allow us to sustain and expand our cyber education initiatives while piquing a student’s interest in cyber& STEM professional fields of study. This generous gift will allow the NCF to create online and offline opportunities for students to understand how to remain safe in a digital world while also exploring and advancing their own futures and careers.”

The NCF will leverage the National Centers of Academic Excellence (CAE) programs to penetrate school systems nationwide and invest in bringing innovative education and training concepts into the classroom. The National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cybersecurity (NCAE-C) program aims to create and manage a collaborative cybersecurity educational program with community colleges, colleges, and universities across the country. The NCAE-C program is managed by NSA’s National Cryptologic School. Federal partners include the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)/National Initiative on Cybersecurity Education (NICE), the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Department of Defense Office of the Chief Information Officer (DoD-CIO), and U.S. Cyber Command (USCYBERCOM).

“We are proud to support the public-private partnership between NCF and NSA and their collaborative efforts to expand programming that will address the critical cyber workforce deficit in our country.By creating innovative opportunities for cyber education and training, we strive to stimulate interest and encourage students of all ages to pursue careers in cyber-related fields,” said Grant Verstandig Co-Founder of the Verstandig Family Foundation and Co-Founder and CEO of Red Cell Partners.

The Verstandig Family Foundation gift will support efforts by the NCF and NSA to promote the value and necessity of public-private partnership and collaboration on cybersecurity and national security by creating a platform for convening robust proactive dialog and technical exchanges to further cybersecurity collaboration and innovation. Some of the most current and pressing issues impinging on cybersecurity are areas that we must address to bridge gaps across the cyber landscape. NSA’s external engagement strategy will continually inform and evolve, and the NCF will ensure continued enrichment through public sector awareness.

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About the National Cryptologic Foundation (NCF)

The NCF serves as a leader in the field of cybersecurity by providing unfettered outreach opportunities for learning and partnerships to advance cyber education to prepare the next generation to succeed in the cyber workforce of tomorrow. The NCF provides educational resources and programs for K-20 students, teachers, counselors, and administrators.

About the Verstandig Family Foundation

The Verstandig Family Foundation builds, funds, and scales initiatives that accelerate innovation, shape policy, and drive change at a local, national, and global level. It focuses on supporting programs, partnerships, and organizations in five core policy areas: health technology, national security, education and entrepreneurship, veteran health, and animal welfare.

Contact: Christine Harding
(301) 399-4101

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