National Youth Cyber Defense Competition Engenders Student Cybersecurity Interest

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The winning team and coaches of the National Champion title for the All Service Division at the CyberPatriot VI Finals Competition in March, 2014. The team, the “Fearsome Falcons,” hails from Clearfield High School in Utah.

The winning team and coaches of the National Champion title for the All Service Division at the CyberPatriot VI Finals Competition in March, 2014. The team, the “Fearsome Falcons,” hails from Clearfield High School in Utah.

Twenty-eight high school and middle school teams competed last week  in the CyberPatriot VI National Finals Competition — the culminating event in the Air Force Association’s sixth annual National Youth Cyber Defense Competition which took place at at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in Md.

The contest launched this year in November and pitted 1,600 teams against each other in a race geared at arousing youth interest in cybersecurity and STEM topics.

Northrop Grumman Corporation — a global security company and the presenting sponsor for the AFA’s national youth cyber education program, CyberPatriot — last week awarded $50,000 in scholarships to the competition’s winning teams.

The 28 teams were tasked in order to win in the finals competition to most efficiently defend virtual networks and mobile devices from professional aggressor teams.

First place winners each earned $2,000, second place winners each won $1,500, and third place winners each got $1,000.

Sandra Evers-Manly, Northrop Grumman’s vice president, Global Corporate Responsibility, applauded the competition for generating student interest in the STEM and cyber security topics so critical to the nation’s progress and sustianability.

“CyberPatriot is generating a strong and consistent flow of students interested in STEM and cybersecurity,” Evers-Manly said. “Our partnership with the AFA is making a difference in career choices. We’re now seeing a whole new generation of qualified cyber pros ready to take on the challenge of securing our digital future, a national security priority that grows more critical every year.

The competition overall drew 1,566 teams and touted representatives from all 50 states.

For more information, or to register a team for CyberPatriot VII, click here.

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