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First CSIS student graduates at fall commencement

by User Not Found | Jan 20, 2014

More than 340 students graduated from Auburn University at Montgomery during its fall commencement exercises on Dec. 14. Among those receiving degrees was Erman E. Samelo, the university's first graduate from its Master of Science in Cybersystems and Information Security program.

Samelo enrolled at Auburn Montgomery in 2011 upon retiring from the U.S. Air Force as superintendent of the Education Support Squadron at the Spaatz Center for Officer Education at Maxwell Air Force Base. With 23 years of experience in information management, he decided to embark on a second career in information security and turned to AUM for training.

“When I was still in the Air Force, my job was the one that implemented information security policies,” said Samelo. “The CSIS master’s program at AUM taught us why policy makers want those policies implemented. This was a challenging program and I know that the knowledge I gained from it will help me in my next career. I would definitely recommend it to others.”

Established in 2010, AUM’s cybersystems and information security program is the first program of its kind in Alabama. It prepares students to become leaders in the field of information and network security, offering instruction and research opportunities that provide graduates with the necessary knowledge and skills to effectively assess, develop, and manage secure information networks and respond to newly developed threats

Students are prepared for careers in homeland security, government and state agencies, private businesses, and armed forces. The program is certified by the Committee on National Security Systems, approved by the Alabama Commission on Higher Education, and accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. 

Learn more about the program at or by contacting program director Mehmet Sahinoglu at 334-244-3769 or

Samelo graduated during AUM’s afternoon commencement ceremony at 2 p.m., along with graduates from the Schools of Sciences, Nursing, and Liberal Arts. At 10 a.m., students from the School of Education and College of Business received degrees.

Benedict Okeke, AUM microbiology professor, served as the distinguished speaker during both ceremonies. He said that graduation is the beginning - not the end - of an educational journey. He said the world is increasingly changing with new technologies and opportunities and encouraged graduates to continue to build their knowledge and skills and evolve with the changing world.

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