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Clash of the CyberTitans

Photos courtesy of Robert Esposito and CyberNB

Two teams from Sisler High School’s Cyber Academy fared well at a recent national cyber security competition held in Fredericton, New Brunswick.

The CyberTitan competition, an initiative of the Information and Communications Technology Council, is designed to promote industry capacity and best practices amongst high school students. The competition was held in concert with CyberSmart, Canada’s largest cybersecurity convention and CyberNB’s Youth Cybersecurity Summit.

A total of 92 teams and over 500 students nationwide competed throughout the school year for a chance to be one of ten finalist teams at the competition; teams competed online through four rounds. Amongst those teams was Sisler’s Team 0.07 (Raiden Ellis Leung, Raven Tiroy, Nick Kingsenamongkhol, Nicholas Foy, Devlin Neil-McSwain and Deven San Miguel) and Team WinTech (Liam Milljour, Matthew Vicente, Tracy Salak, Christian Sotomil, Jericho Dadoacuna and Carlos Miguel Aquino). The teams were coached by teacher Robert Esposito and Sisler alumnus Nick Dixon.

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Team 0.07 came away with first place in Digital Forensics Response, one of two major categories in the competition. The team’s name is derived from the margin of error that caused them to miss last year’s American CyberPatriot finals.

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“It’s a big relief to finish first…it feels good to know that all the hard work paid off in the end,” said student Raiden Ellis Leung.

Sisler’s afterschool Cyber Defense Club has excellent participation, with 17 teams of students participating this year. Students spend long hours after school and on weekends as part of their preparations for competitions—including a six-hour simulation run.

“It’s a good outlet for us to meet up and work together,” Raiden said. “It doesn’t seem like work when you’re having fun…you don’t really notice that six hours have passed by.”

For CyberTitan, students analyzed and problem-solved in a simulated company network. Points are awarded for best maintenance practices (such as removing viruses and updating programs) as well as problem-solving errors in the system.

“This is the application of real world skills and real world challenges,” Mr. Esposito said. “Students training for this competition are learning the exact same skills they would be using in the workforce.”

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The tech industry’s commitment to building new young talent in the field is readily apparent; the ten teams at CyberTitan had all of their expenses paid to attend the competition.

“The final competition is completely connected to industry,” Mr. Esposito said. “There are more jobs, specifically in cybersecurity, than there are people looking at them. The industry just can’t find enough people in these areas. There are so many opportunities out there in technology in general.”

Raiden said that along with being effective communicators and working as an integrated team, students also had to be flexible thinkers.

“You have to have to be able to think on your feet and have an open mind. You can’t just think of a solution in one way. You have to think of multiple possibilities and outcomes.”

Congratulations to both of the Sisler teams for their national success!

 

 

 

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