Pete Aguilar

Rep. Pete Aguilar was instrumental in securing additional funding for a key cyber initiative.

Rep. Pete Aguilar (D-31st District) was instrumental in securing additional funding for a key cyber initiative.

This past week, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 2740, the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, Defense, State, Foreign Operations, and Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act, 2020.

The bill includes Aguilar’s provision to appropriate an additional $3 million in funding for the Department of Defense (DoD) Cyber Scholarship Program, bringing funding for the program for the upcoming fiscal year to $10 million.

The increase in funding will allow more students to participate in the program, which granted 40 scholarships to students in 2018, including to two students at Cal State San Bernardino.

“Our national defense is increasingly in need of a strong cyber workforce, and the DoD Cyber Scholarship Program is an important tool to help us build that workforce in communities like the Inland Empire. I’m proud that we’ve been able to grow this program over the past few years, and to continue giving more students the opportunity to contribute to our national security and gain the skills that will help them remain competitive in the 21st century economy,” said Aguilar, whose district includes part of Fontana.

“These programs are critical to defending our nation in cyberspace. These resources are critical for not only our nation but our region,” said Tony Coulson, director of the Cyber Security Center at Cal State San Bernardino.

As vice chair of the House Appropriations Committee, Aguilar has consistently advocated for the Cyber Scholarship Program, passing increases for the program in 2018 after successfully passing an amendment to restart the scholarship program in 2017.

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