Air University’s newly created Air Force Cyber College at Maxwell AFB, Ala., is expanding in an effort to teach airmen how to better protect networks, the university’s Commander Lt. Gen. Steven Kwast said at ASC15. The college was created this summer and is not a “brick and mortar” institute, with less of an emphasis on putting students in classrooms with traditional professors. Instead, it brings together courses in person and online, to think about ways to address the ever-increasing issue of cyber protection. The university reaches out to its “customers”—Air Force Space Command, 24th Air Force, and US Cyber Command—to figure out what the workforce needs, and design a curriculum around increasing cybersecurity in the service. Every one of 230,000 students currently involved with classes at Air University will in some way learn about the role of cybersecurity, along with 16 Ph.D. researchers at the Air Force Institute of Technology focused on the highest level—both classified and unclassified, research on cybersecurity, Kwast said. The university is also working with the city of Montgomery to create a “gig city” with public access to internet at speeds of up to 100 gigabits per second. Creating a this public access, with collaboration across the military, local government and private industry, will be a way to encourage these connections to create a “cyber consortium” and encourage innovation across the sectors, Kwast said.
Unlike nearly every other innovative technology throughout history, Maj. Gen. DeAnna M. Burt believes the space enterprise emerged backward. “Every other domain started with an entrepreneur who built something,” Burt, the special assistant to the Chief of Space Operations, told an audience at AFA’s Air, Space & Cyber Conference.