CyberPatriot is the Air Force Association's National Youth Cyber Education Program. The organization is best known for hosting the nation's largest cyber defense competition, an event which regularly attracts several thousand teams of high school and middle school students. In the competition students are placed in the position of newly hired IT professionals who are responsible for managing the security of a small network. Through a series of online rounds, teams are given a set of computer systems and are tasked with finding and fixing cybersecurity vulnerabilities while maintaining critical services. Using a proprietary scoring engine, teams are assessed by how secure they make their operating systems and network infrastructure. Top teams advance through the online rounds of competition, and the best of the best advance to the in-person National Finals Competition.
All of CyberPatriot's activities are completely hands-on. By participating in the competition, students will gain real-world experience with relevant technologies and tools. There isn’t anything particularly difficult in the program’s curriculum, but there is a lot of ground to cover. For that reason, the program essentially runs year-round. Competitors will have plenty of time to train and ample opportunity to practice.
Joining the team is also a great opportunity for students to learn about potential career pathways. During our meetings, the team will analyze various work roles within the field of technology. Several industry professionals have volunteered to help mentor our competitors throughout the upcoming season. These mentors will virtually attend some of the team’s meetings to answer questions and explain what a day in their shoes is like.
CyberPatriot is an amazing opportunity for any student who is willing to put in a little extra time and effort into their education. In fact, some have described it as the most fascinating and useful extracurricular being offered in the school district.
The coach, Jevin, can be reached via his school email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
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