Emily Rice Published

MU Students Work With Homeland Security

A group of students poses around a podium.
Eight Marshall University cyber students kicked off an internship this summer with the West Virginia Department of Homeland Security’s Fusion Center. Back row, from left to right: Abrianna Angus, Reece Thomas, Robert Miller II, Emma Meadows. Front row, from left to right: Alisha Joseph, Hannah Carroll, Kaylyn Hayes, George Urling.
Marshall University

Eight Marshall University students are working with the West Virginia Department of Homeland Security’s Fusion Center through an internship.

The students kicked off a ten-month-long internship this summer where they will rotate through positions with the Fusion Center’s Open-Source Intelligence Threat Group, Human Trafficking Section and Digital Forensics Lab.

Jeff Sandy recently retired as cabinet secretary for the West Virginia Department of Homeland Security. He said he had a wonderful experience participating in a similar program at Marshall University.

“The hands-on work experience gave me an opportunity to become a special agent, sheriff and cabinet secretary,” Sandy said. “This is a special program, and I know it will help these talented students achieve their goals after graduation.”

This first round of interns participating in the West Virginia Fusion Center’s Marshall Cyber Forensics and Security Internship Program include Abrianna Angus, Alisha Joseph, Emma Meadows, George Urling, Hannah Carroll, Kaylin Hayes, Reece Thomas and Robert Miller II.

The program started last month and will continue through May 2024.

Recruitment and selection of the next cohort of interns will begin in the middle of the spring 2024 semester. Program coordinators are looking for students with knowledge and experience in open-source intelligence collection and analysis as well as cyber forensics.

Participants will graduate with the advantage of real–world experience when looking for a job, according to John Sammons, associate director of Marshall’s Institute for Cyber Security.

“This is such a great opportunity for our students,” Sammons said. “It gives them significant real-world experience ahead of graduation and pays them while they do it. The program pays the students enough that they can make a major dent in their tuition if they choose to do so. We’d like to also note that students from multiple programs are participating.”