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LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — The National Science Foundation has awarded New Mexico State University a grant worth nearly $4 million to prepare students for careers in computing.

The university announced Wednesday that the funding also will go toward scholarships for academically talented community college students in the computer science field who need financial help.

College of Arts and Sciences Dean Enrico Pontelli says one of the goals is to help students develop professional skills, particularly in the area of cyber security. He says that’s one of the most competitive and fastest growing fields in the area of computer science.

The grant is for five years and success will be based on how many scholarship recipients have completed their computer-science degrees and are entering the workforce in a related field.