Malvern-based Layer 8 Security has a connection to Penn State Great Valley that runs deeper than the physical proximity. CEO and co-founder Jeffrey Lipson earned his master of science in Information Science degree from the campus after serving almost six years of active duty in the Marine Corps. Last year, Lipson created cybersecurity units for the Marine Corps Forces Reserve, for which he was awarded the Legion of Merit; he credits the success of that project to the multidisciplinary nature of his Penn State Great Valley degree.
Given that connection, and the Lipson family history of giving to Penn State, Lipson and Layer 8 Security were eager to invest in Penn State Great Valley’s information science program. Prior to the start of the 2021-22 academic year, the company established the Layer 8 Security Scholarship in Information Science, an annually funded scholarship that provides $2,500 a year for five years.
“We created the Layer 8 Security Scholarship at Penn State Great Valley because we wanted to create cybersecurity professionals in the Great Valley area, and we wanted veterans to be able to become cybersecurity professionals,” Lipson said.
The scholarship is for current or new full- or part-time information science students who have achieved superior academic records or who manifest promise of outstanding academic success. Preference is given to United States military students, including veterans, active duty, reservist, and National Guard. Military service is important to Layer 8 Security: combined, Lipson and president and co-founder Kevin Hyde have almost 50 years of experience serving in the Marine Corps. Creating an annually funded scholarship ensured Layer 8 Security would be directly and immediately supporting a group of students closely aligned with the company’s mission.
“We would like the Penn State Great Valley Layer 8 Security Scholarship to have a lasting legacy in the Delaware Valley,” Lipson said. “Veterans are very important to me, and cyber security is as well. Combining the two, allowing a veteran to pursue their cybersecurity educational opportunities, was a great way to push it forward.”
“We are very grateful to Jeff and Layer 8 Security for their generous contribution,” said JoAnn Kelly, director, enrollment management and student services. “This will have a lasting impact on our students and provides a great opportunity for our military students and the local military community.”
This gift will advance “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence,” a focused campaign that seeks to elevate Penn State’s position as a leading public university in a world defined by rapid change and global connections. With the support of alumni and friends, “A Greater Penn State” seeks to fulfill the three key imperatives of a 21st-century public university: keeping the doors to higher education open to hardworking students regardless of financial well-being; creating transformative experiences that go beyond the classroom; and impacting the world by serving communities and fueling discovery, innovation and entrepreneurship. To learn more about “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence,” visit greaterpennstate.psu.edu.