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REU Site Program to Engage Undergraduate Students in Cybersecurity Research

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2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


New Orleans, Louisiana

Publication Date

June 26, 2016

Start Date

June 26, 2016

End Date

August 28, 2016





Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session I

Tagged Topics

Diversity and NSF Grantees Poster Session

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Paper Authors


Ziqian (Cecilia) Dong New York Institute of Technology

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Ziqian Dong is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the New York Institute of Technology (NYIT). She received her B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from BeiHang University (formerly Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics), Beijing, China, M.S. and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), Newark, NJ. She was awarded the Hashimoto Prize for the best Ph.D. dissertation in Electrical Engineering, NJIT in 2008. She is the recipient of 2006 and 2007 Hashimoto Fellowship for outstanding scholarship and the New Jersey Inventors Hall of Fame Graduate Student Award for her inventions in network switches. Her research interests include architecture design and analysis of high-performance packet switches, data center networks, network security and forensics, wireless sensor networks, and assistive medical devices. Her research has been supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF), Motorola, National Collegiate Alliance for Inventors and Innovators, Xilinx, and NYIT. She is the principal investigator for the NYIT Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) site funded by NSF to engage undergraduates in mobile device and network security research. She is a senior member of the IEEE Communications Society, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Women in Engineering, and a member of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), and the Environmental Sensing, Networking and Decision-Making (ESND) technical committee. She has served in technical program committee of IEEE High Performance Switching and Routing, IEEE Sarnoff, IEEE GreenCom and ChinaCom, and as a reviewer for IEEE journals, conferences and NSF panels. For more information, please visit:

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Huanying Gu New York Institute of Technology

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Dr. Gu is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at New York Institute of Technology. Prior to joining the NYIT faculty, she was an Associate Professor of Health Informatics at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. She is a research associate of Structural Analysis of Biomedical Ontologies Center at New Jersey Institute of Technology. Dr. Gu’s research interests include controlled terminologies, ontologies, object-oriented modeling, conceptual modeling, data mining, and medical informatics with an emphasis on controlled biomedical terminologies. Dr. Gu’s research has been supported by the National Institute of Health (NIH), the UMDNJ foundation, PDR network, and NYIT ISRC grants. She has served as a reviewer for journals and conferences on biomedical informatics. Dr. Gu is the member of the American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) and the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE). She has been the recipient of the NYIT Faculty Scholar’s Award. She has also received the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Research at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. Dr. Gu received her Ph.D. in Computer Science from New Jersey Institute of Technology, her M.S in Computer Science from Nanjing University of Science and Technology and her B.S. in computer Science from Huazhong University of Science and Technology, China.

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Marta A Panero New York Institute of Technology

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Dr Panero is Director for Strategic Partnerships for the School of Engineering and Computing Sciences at New York Institute of Technology. Panero received her Ph.D. in economics from the New School for Social Research with a concentration in economic development and sustainable and environmental economics. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from Fordham University, with a B.A. in Social Sciences. Besides her responsibilities in developing strategic partnerships that support the mission of the School of Engineering and Computing Sciences, Panero serves as a resource to faculty and students on economics and market plans, including student design projects and special topics courses; developing strategic partnerships with industry and promoting partnerships for applied research and joint industry and academic projects.

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This paper presents the establishment of a research experience for undergraduates (REU) site at New York Institute of Technology. The objective of the REU site is to train undergraduates to conduct research and also provide participants with professional development opportunities from academia, industry, and government agencies. The major goals of the project are the following: 1) to introduce security research on smartphones and mobile networks to undergraduate students and prepare them for graduate studies; 2) to increase the number of women and minority students from underrepresented groups who engage in security research and provide support for them to become security researchers; 3) to provide research opportunities in a high-demand area to those who would otherwise have no access to research facilities; and 4) to increase awareness of, and approaches to, challenging problems of security in mobile devices and networks. We shared our experience of student recruitment, faculty mentor support, research activity planning and logistics of running an REU site at high living cost metropolitan area. The outcome and success stories of students’ accomplishments are outlined in this article.

Dong, Z. C., & Gu, H., & Panero, M. A. (2016, June), REU Site Program to Engage Undergraduate Students in Cybersecurity Research Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.26100

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