BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — LSU says it is among 21 other universities to receive a cyber designation from the National Security Agency (NSA).

The university said it is the sole school in the state to have the Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Operations (CAE-CO).

“For students, this will magnetize LSU as a great choice to study very technical and applied cybersecurity, which now leads to jobs with starting salaries in the six figures,” Professor Golden G. Richard III, director of the LSU Applied Cybersecurity Lab and faculty lead for CAE-CO said. “CAE-CO designation drastically increases the exposure of our program, both nationally and internationally. Importantly, it also gives LSU access to grants that are only available to CAE schools. This means significant pots of money for students, projects and equipment.”

With the new designation, LSU students studying computer science will have a greater opportunity for internships at the NSA, CIA, FBI, and Department of Homeland Security.

“Last year, LSU received an invitation from the National Security Agency to apply for the prestigious Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Operations designation. As the only university to receive an invitation, this recognition affirmed our position as a state and national leader in cyber and defense,” said William F. Tate IV, LSU President. “After establishing our Scholarship First Agenda, we committed to attaining elite status and impactful outcomes in each of the five areas. With a cluster hire of cyber experts joining a strong LSU faculty and now receiving the Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Operations designation, we march forward on a pathway of promise that leads to world class standing.”

In March, the university committed to working toward becoming a powerhouse in cybersecurity and military studies.

For more information about cybersecurity at LSU, click here.