Hoda Mehrpouyan, an assistant professor in the computer science department and associate director of the Cyber Lab for Industrial Control Systems, was awarded a National Science Foundation CAREER Award to further her cybersecurity and network research.
This prestigious, five-year award of $454,000 will support Mehrpouyan’s work in understanding behaviors of safety and security in complex systems, and developing a multi-layer security framework to provide control technicians and engineers with superior mechanisms to address the increasing risk of cybersecurity attacks. The scope of this research is primarily on vulnerable water treatment plants and reducing latent risks to public health and safety, industry and national security. Her collaborating partners include Suez Idaho, Idaho National Laboratory, Idaho Digital Learning and Women Innovators of Idaho.
“The state of Idaho has been recognized to be in need of investment in water infrastructure,” said Mehrpouyan. “With the large number of water reservoirs and dams in the state providing water to the rural communities, protection of these infrastructure is now more important than ever. The funding from this proposal will allow me to collaborate with the Idaho National Laboratory to help the scientists and researchers with the water security and defense research.”
The CAREER award also will support Mehrpouyan’s goal of creating real-world opportunities for the next generation of women and minority students to engage with cybersecurity, and consider careers in the field.
“I believe that cybersecurity is everyone’s responsibility,” said Mehrpouyan. “The expansion of the pool of potential cybersecurity professionals is one of the reasons, among many, to attract women and minorities to science and technology education.”
Mehrpouyan has been a Boise State faculty member since 2016, and said this accomplishment could not have been done “without the support of those colleagues and advisors who have encouraged me throughout my career.
“Special thanks goes to my parents, my brother Hani Mehrpouyan, my sister-in-law Sonia, and my wonderful niece Mia,” she said.