Huawei and F-Secure donate to Aalto information security students - attracts excellent students to Finland
The technology company Huawei and information security company F-Secure continue supporting The Helsinki-Aalto Centre for Information Security (HAIC) in 2020 by making a donation to HAIC. HAIC is a joint initiative by Aalto University and the University of Helsinki, established in 2016, that aims to ensure excellence in the Finnish information security research and education.
According to Mikko Terho, VP Technology Planning and Site Manager from Huawei Technologies Oy (Finland), Aalto University and the University of Helsinki have been doing well in producing qualified security experts, which is important to sustain research and development in the field of platform and cloud security. ‘HAIC programme essentially is a key enabler to achieve this goal.’
F-Secure has sponsored HAIC for three years and Huawei for two years, supporting the master-level students studying information security. ‘Huawei has seen the collaboration mutually beneficial. It has also enabled better recruitments for Huawei. We have also hosted several good interns and thesis workers, which has strengthened and supported our in-house knowledge in several topics,’ Terho continues.
Jyrki Tulokas, CTO at F-Secure, says that F-Secure continues supporting the HAIC initiative and also providing Master’s thesis work and internship opportunities for security students, as it recognizes the growing need for top-notch skills in cyber security at the company and in Finland. ‘Collaboration with HAIC is an integral part of our joint research and education activities with Aalto University and the University of Helsinki, which we hope to expand further in the coming years,’ Tulokas states.
Professor N. Asokan, the founding director of HAIC who steps down from his position in 2019, mentions that supporting student scholarships through gifts is a relatively new concept in Finland. ‘I am gratified that our industry partners like Huawei and F-Secure have consistently supported HAIC from its inception,’ he says.
Professor N. Asokan points out that the higher education landscape is changing around the world. He thinks we need more industry partners in Finland to step up with this kind of support to ensure that Finland continues its track record of producing top-notch information security experts.
‘I am grateful for Huawei and F-Secure for the continued support for computer science education in Finland. I am also honoured to continue the legacy of N. Asokan and move HAIC to a new decade when I start at Aalto in January 2020,’ says Professor Janne Lindqvist, the incoming Director of HAIC.
The donations go towards scholarships for Master’s students, the goal of which is to attract the best international candidates to the area of information security that has an acute and growing need for new professionals. In 2020, HAIC will offer scholarships for several new students whose earlier academic success shows great promise.
The scholars will receive generous financial aid in the form of a living cost scholarship, and a tuition fee waiver if they come from outside the EU/EEA. The scholars need to be admitted in either the Security and Cloud Computing major at Aalto University’s Master’s Programme in Computer, Communication and Information Sciences or SECCLO – Master’s Programme in Security and Cloud Computing (Erasmus Mundus).
The previous scholars have been happy with their studies at Aalto University, and they have emphasized the critical role of the living cost scholarship in deciding where to start their studies. Right now, HAIC supports several students through scholarships. Two former HAIC scholars graduated earlier this year. You can read more about the experiences of HAIC scholar students here.