The National SecureUS Collegiate Cyber Challenge Exercise for National Centers of Academic Excellence – Cybersecurity (NCAE-C) Institutions, hosted by NUARI on 14 September 2023, was the first of two capstone events following a prior series of 14 CAE-C regional student-focused cybersecurity exercises. The 14 regional and first national CAE-C cybersecurity exercises were funded by the National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cybersecurity grant (Evidencing Competency, H98230-20-1-0380), which is part of the National Security Agency. Norwich University is the grant lead institution.
The regional exercises explored both the student (player) learning perspective, as well as the evaluator’s perspective, using the NCAE-C Competency Essential Elements, ABCDE model. Students were introduced to the exercise method of examining problems and working through solutions before they happen. The exercises engaged students, faculty, and leadership and provided an opportunity to consider how exercises might be incorporated into the university curriculum, with the overarching goal of producing a more employable workforce using the DOD Cyber Workforce Framework model. NUARI also developed a scoring rubric for these exercises based upon the MONTREAT 360⁰ model, which evaluates 8 competencies most desired by employers.
- College of Coastal Georgia
- East Iowa Community College
- Forsyth Technical College
- Missouri State University
- NW Arkansas Community College
- University of Maine
- University of Tennessee Chattanooga
- University of Texas San Antonio
- Valencia College
Forsyth Tech emerged as the victor in the Challenge, a result attributed to two key factors. First, Forsyth Tech exhibited an impressive turnout, bringing in more participants than any other educational institution. Second, the quality of responses from the Forsyth Tech students, who are all members of Forsyth Tech’s Information Technology Professionals Club, was characterized by meticulous thought and profound insights. Their contagious enthusiasm and exemplary performance set a commendable standard for other schools and clubs, making them deserving winners of the inaugural SecureUS Collegiate Cyber Challenge Exercise for CAE-C Institutions.
The outcome can be supported by analyzing the following breakdown:
Team C secured a total of 327 points, comprised of eight participants, three of whom represented Forsyth Tech. These individuals notably made substantial contributions to the discussions and provided valuable insights in the Player Evaluation Survey.
Team A attained a score of 299 points, featuring a roster of ten participants, four of whom hailed from Forsyth Tech. Like Team C, the Forsyth students played a pivotal role in the discussions and offered substantial input in the Player Evaluation Survey.
Team B garnered 276 points, with eight participants in their lineup. One particular player from this team stood out, contributing significantly to the discussions and delivering outstanding input in the Player Evaluation Survey.
A second National exercise is planned for the Spring of 2024. The second National exercise is funded by the National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cybersecurity grant (Careers Preparation National Center, H98230-22-1-0329), which is part of the National Security Agency.
Jakon is the Senior Marketing and Strategic Communications Specialist for Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI). He develops and executes digital and social media awareness initiatives promoting NUARI's mission of enabling a resilient society through rapid research, development, and education in cybersecurity, defense technologies, and information warfare.More posts by Jakon Hays