Full Professor: Director of SDSU Cybersecurity Center for Academic Excellence

San Diego State University

Full Professor: Director of SDSU Cybersecurity Center for Academic Excellence
SDSU Cybersecurity Center for Academic Excellence

Location: San Diego, CA
Open Date: Aug 25, 2023

San Diego State University (http://www.sdsu.edu)seeks to fill a Founding Director position for the San Diego State University Cybersecurity Center for Academic Excellence (SDSUCCAE) to begin August 2024. The research Center will become a platform to conduct research on a variety of cybersecurity topics such as offensive & defensive cyber operations, secure mobile computing, secure software design & development, digital privacy, network & IoT security, supply chain security, security of hardware engineering, and homeland security. The Center will also support cybersecurity workforce development to meet the industry and government demands.

This Full Professor tenure-track faculty position will be housed in the appropriate academic department (e.g., MIS, Computer Science, Electrical and Computer Engineering, etc.). Candidates should indicate in their application cover letter the department at SDSU that they believe is best suited for their academic training and expertise. Academic home determination for college department affiliation will depend on candidate academic training, fit with potential college departments and college dean approval. The selected candidate will be responsible for building an interdisciplinary research program from existing faculty expertise in SDSU departments and programs to develop a robust and resilient, externally funded research program that also delivers leading-edge workforce development opportunities for students in Southern California. SDSUCCAE is positioned at the dynamic epicenter of applied research in cybersecurity coupled with creating new formal degree offerings. The Founding Director will articulate the vision for the Center, help hire an Executive Director, and assist in recruiting the first cohort of faculty cluster hires that the campus is making in this emergent field.

Key Responsibilities for the Founding Director

  • Develop a robust vision and agile, externally funded cybersecurity research program focused on offensive and defensive cyber operations, digital privacy, software and software system security, network security, security of engineering hardware, and secure computing with applications in the internet of things, mobile computing and applications, homeland security, advanced manufacturing, systems design, health care, and digital entertainment. Building on the focus of SDSU related to the US-Mexico border region and the many practical applications of cybersecurity for this region and community will help the Center enhance the overall mission and vision of SDSU.
  • Establish the Center in compliance with the 2021 NSA Center for Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense. Anticipated timeline for application is one year.
  • Oversight of the development of new courses and certificates that are compliant with and recognized as part of the NIST National Institute for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) framework.
  • Identify opportunities for private- and public-sector partnerships that seek to develop cybersecurity solutions to problems that impact society and the Southern Californian economy and community including the military, businesses, and the people of the region.
  • Recruitment of key personnel for the Cyber Center for Academic Excellence, including an Executive Director in year one and in additional years, the needed cluster faculty hires to realize the Center’s vision.
  • Collaborate with other cybersecurity groups regionally and on a statewide basis as well as working with agencies such as CISA, NIST, NSA, FBI, FBI InfraGard, and others with formal cybersecurity responsibilities and leadership roles in the community.


  • Ph.D. in Cybersecurity, Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Management Information Systems, or related disciplines in the application of cybersecurity across a spectrum of applications and workforce development required. Additional academic qualifications or a degree in data science are a plus.
  • Professor at a research-intensive university or equivalent experience in the industry.
  • Experience in developing cybersecurity courses, certificates, or program offerings.
  • Recent scholarly publication record demonstrating the ability to conduct and publish high impact, peer-reviewed research required.
  • A successful record of establishing and running an externally funded research program and or/center required including in leadership roles.
  • Experience with technology transfer and intellectual property protection, including opensource licenses and new venture creation.
  • The candidate should demonstrate superb written and verbal communication skills and an ability to work across colleges with a diverse faculty group to achieve the desired vision for a Center of Academic Excellence with impacts across the university and throughout the community.

We are seeking applicants with demonstrated experience in and/or commitment to teaching and working effectively with individuals from diverse backgrounds and members of underrepresented groups. Candidates must satisfy two or more of the eight Building on Inclusive Excellence (BIE) criteria. Candidates that meet BIE criteria: (a) are committed to engaging in service with underrepresented populations within the discipline, (b) have demonstrated knowledge of barriers for underrepresented students and faculty within the discipline, (c) have experience or have demonstrated commitment to teaching and mentoring underrepresented students, (d) have experience or have demonstrated commitment to integrating understanding of underrepresented populations and communities into research, (e) have experience in or have demonstrated commitment to extending knowledge of opportunities and challenges in achieving artistic/scholarly success to members of an underrepresented group, (f) have experience in or have demonstrated commitment to research that engages underrepresented communities, (g) have expertise or demonstrated commitment to developing expertise in cross-cultural communication and collaboration, and/or (h) have research interests that contribute to diversity and equal opportunity in higher education. Please indicate in a separate diversity statement how you meet at least two (2) of these criteria. Additional guidance on our BIE program for applicants is here.

SDSU is the oldest institution of higher education in the San Diego region, with a campus and microsites in San Diego and locations in Southern California’s Imperial Valley and Tbilisi in the Republic of Georgia. The highly diverse campus community has a student population of approximately 36,000. SDSU is included in the Carnegie Foundation’s Doctoral Universities: High Research Activity category. Established in 1897, SDSU offers bachelor’s degrees in 97 areas, masters in 84 and doctorates in 23 areas. Please visit http://www.sdsu.edu for more information. SDSU is a large, diverse, urban university and Hispanic-Serving Institution with a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusive excellence. Our campus community is diverse in many ways, including race, religion, color, sex, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, national origin, pregnancy, medical condition, and covered veteran status. We strive to build and sustain a welcoming environment for all.

The SDSU Mission Valley Innovation District will offer opportunities for collaboration and entrepreneurship, with 1.6 million square feet of planned research and innovation space that will be developed primarily through public and private partnerships. SDSU researchers and Innovation District partners will work together to develop creative solutions to complex problems. SDSU’s entrepreneurship programs have the potential to catalyze the public impact of research discoveries.

Application Instructions
To apply, visit https://apply.interfolio.com/129903

Candidates should submit: cover letter, curriculum vitae, diversity statement (i.e., commitment to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in academia), research statement, vision statement for the center for cybersecurity, three relevant publications and the names and contact information of three (3) references via Interfolio at http://apply.interfolio.com/129903. Applications received by December 1, 2023 will receive full consideration; the position will remain open until filled. Questions related to this search may be addressed to cybersechire@sdsu.edu.

The minimum salary for this position is based on the current CSU salary schedule for Professors and may be revised based on contract collective bargaining. The anticipated salary range is from $170,000 to $190,000. In addition to academic year salary, the director will have additional summer pay to support their director role. Salary placement will be based on the selected candidate’s qualifications and experience, and salaries higher than the published maximums may be offered in limited circumstances. Salary represents one component of a job offer that will also include a full benefits package, moving expenses, and start-up support. San Diego State University offers a rich benefits package that constitutes a major portion of total compensation. For benefits information, click here.

As part of its commitment to a safe and equitable “OneSDSU” community, SDSU requires that individuals seeking faculty employment provide at the time of application authorization to conduct background checks if they become a finalist for the position; applications without this authorization will be considered incomplete and not considered.

A background check (including a criminal records check) must be completed before any candidate can be offered a position with the CSU. Failure to satisfactorily complete the background check may affect the application status of applicants or continued employment of current CSU employees who apply for the position.

The person holding this position is considered a “mandated reporter” under the California Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act and is required to comply with the requirements set forth in CSU Executive Order 1083 as a condition of employment.

SDSU is a Title IX, equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate against persons on the basis of race, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity and expression, marital status, age, disability, pregnancy, medical condition, or covered veteran status.



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