Tougaloo College secures $1 million grant from Google to establish cybersecurity clinic

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JANS – In a significant move to bolster cybersecurity education and local digital defense, Tougaloo College has been awarded a $1 million grant from Google’s Cybersecurity Clinics Fund. The grant, part of’s $25 million nationwide initiative, will support the creation of a new cybersecurity clinic at the college. This clinic is expected to play a pivotal role in both training students and protecting the local community from cyber threats.

The funding comes through a collaboration between, the philanthropic arm of Google, and the Consortium of Cybersecurity Clinics. Tougaloo College is among 15 institutions across the U.S. chosen to establish such clinics in 2024.

The clinics aim to provide hands-on cybersecurity training to students while offering vital security services to under-resourced organizations. These services are especially crucial for entities such as small businesses, hospitals, and schools, which are increasingly targeted by cyberattacks.

Demetria White, Director of Academic Computing at Tougaloo College, expressed enthusiasm for the initiative, highlighting the importance of community involvement. “Cybersecurity is a shared responsibility that affects everyone in our digital world,” she said. “We are thrilled to empower our students to become leaders in safeguarding our communities through this innovative public service initiative.”

The new cybersecurity clinic will be housed within Tougaloo College’s Mathematics and Computer Science department. It will provide training for students to conduct cybersecurity risk assessments and audits, as well as host cyber awareness sessions for the college and the wider community. The clinic also plans to offer pro bono services to local non-profits, churches, healthcare facilities, and small businesses.

Heather Adkins, VP of Security Engineering at Google, underscored the importance of developing a robust cybersecurity workforce in the face of evolving threats. “The world is at a critical juncture where emerging technologies like AI are creating both opportunities and challenges in cybersecurity,” she said. “It’s essential to invest in a strong, diverse workforce to protect everyone, from major infrastructures to local businesses and schools.”

Ann Cleaveland, co-founder and co-chair of the Consortium of Cybersecurity Clinics and Executive Director of the UC Berkeley Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity, praised Google’s investment. “This transformative funding is a catalyst for advancing cybersecurity for the public good,” she noted. “The awards support our vision to establish a cybersecurity clinic in every U.S. state by 2030.”

The World Economic Forum’s 2024 Global Risks Report highlights cyber insecurity as one of the top global risks for the next decade. In the United States, the demand for cybersecurity professionals is skyrocketing, with nearly 450,000 open positions, including 2,280 in Mississippi alone. The field is expected to grow by 32% by 2033, emphasizing the need for a skilled and diverse workforce to protect critical infrastructure and businesses nationwide.

Tougaloo College’s clinic is part of a larger strategy by Google and the Consortium of Cybersecurity Clinics to launch 25 such clinics by 2025. Google is not only providing financial support but also offering volunteer mentorship from its employees, Google Titan Security Keys, and scholarships for the Google Career Certificate in Cybersecurity.

This initiative builds on Google’s commitment to cybersecurity, following support for ten other clinics in 2023. With this latest round of funding, has invested over $25 million to help create a diverse and capable cybersecurity workforce across the country.

Tougaloo College’s new clinic is set to make a significant impact, both in training the next generation of cybersecurity experts and in providing essential security services to the community.

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Tougaloo College secures $1 million grant from Google to establish cybersecurity clinic

By Jackson Advocate News Service
June 30, 2024