Belhaven Reboots Computer Science Program

As the fall semester gets underway on campus, there is an all new program for students at Belhaven to take advantage of. Computer Science makes its return as a major at Belhaven, and alumnus Dr. David O’Gwynn ’99 is excited to lead it.

“Computer science has changed dramatically from the academic programs of the past,” said Dr. Roger Parrott, President of Belhaven University. “I’m thrilled that our new major will be on the front edge of what students need to get the best jobs in the computer science industry.”

Classes have already started and students are getting the insight they need to succeed in their field of study. Students are learning and creating web and network-enabled software. The core curriculum of the new program is centered around network services and incorporates concentrations in cyber security and indie gaming. Students pursuing an emphasis in cyber security are studying network defense, cyber intelligence, malware reverse engineering, incident response as well as network intrusion and defense.

“One needs only scan the headlines to understand that our networked world is a very hostile place,” said Dr. O’Gwynn. “Businesses and governments alike are under constant attack in the cyber domain from criminals, extremists and others. We are preparing our students for that world, giving them the tools to protect and defend the systems they will build and maintain.”

Dr. O’Gwynn worked at Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT Lincoln Laboratory where he was a technical staff member of the Cyber Systems and Operations Group.  Dr. O’Gwynn worked on projects dealing with cyber situational awareness and the support of national cyber defense. He received his PhD in computer science from University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2011, his M.S. in computational engineering from Mississippi State University in 2003 and his B.S. in mathematics from Belhaven University in 1999.  His PhD thesis was on a topological approach to shape analysis and alignment.