This Tandon Scholarship Wants You to Hack It Up


Daniel Cole

To encourage NYU students to enter the world of cyber security, Tandon created a scholarship.

Htoo Min, Contributing Writer

Hacking at Tandon is truly ingrained in the culture of the school — from Hack Nights to the Offensive Security Incident Response and Internet Security Lab, Tandon provides many hacking resources to its students. And now the school has one more: a full tuition scholarship for students who place in hacking competitions during Cyber Security Awareness Week.

Tandon announced the creation of the new scholarship right after the week-long occasion, which is the biggest cyber security event at NYU. The school created the award to motivate students to assume more active roles in cyber security and to help create a safer cyber world.

The security competitions are open to both graduate and undergraduate students, and the categories range from hacking computer software to developing technology that can benefit other people.

Computer science department chair and professor Nasir Memon, who helped form this scholarship, said that the award is for any undergraduate student who places in one of the events.

“They will be admitted to the graduate program or the Ph.D program,” Memon said. “You are automatically qualified for the scholarship once you place, but you need to apply for admission as well. The admission decision and the scholarship decision are independent, so only after you are admitted into the university will the scholarship come into effect.”

Tandon sophomore Abir Hassan majors in computer science and often participates in these hacking events because he thinks it brings greater awareness to cyber security. He said that this scholarship will definitely help further that mission.

“It’s important to get experience in cyber security so we can all learn the importance of protecting people’s personal information,” Hassan said. “I think it’s good that Tandon offers scholarships to students because it will encourage students to pursue this field that is in such high demand — especially given the current political situation where encryption and protection of personal data is more important now than ever before.”

He thinks that the new scholarship will help further the awareness of how important cyber security is today, seeing how much people rely on computers to accomplish tasks.

Tandon sophomore Singwa Cheng also majors in computer science, and he thinks Cyber Security Awareness Week and other hacking events are a good way to highlight the work of computer science students.

“Hacking at NYU is certainly one of the most significant events for us Tandon Students,” Cheng said. “It provides an opportunity for us to utilize the knowledge that we have absorbed from classes and actually bring them to life.”

While Cheng strives to receive first place in one of these competitions, he said that the competition is not just for students who want to reach the top.

“Most of the hacking events are not about getting things done here and there,” Cheng said. “It’s about communication — it’s about sharing your ideas and listening to others.”

Email Htoo Min at [email protected].