A cyber competition powered by Leidos and administered by Temple University’s Institute for Business and Information Technology (IBIT) to fill the ever-growing need for cyber analysts has a winner. The team from Carnegie Mellon University was awarded $25,000 as the winner of the second National Cyber Analyst Challenge.
Developed to enhance the skills of the future workforce and inspire students to pursue careers in cyber security, the National Cyber Analyst Challenge focuses on developing strategic skills involving analysis and threat identification.
Our nation and our very way of life is under constant attack in cyberspace, said Chris Kearns, senior vice president of enterprise and cyber solutions at Leidos.
These talented students demonstrated amazing skill to connect the dots in this real-world scenario to defend our critical digital infrastructure.
A panel of industry experts scored the team from Carnegie Mellon University highest in technical proficiency, judgment, and communication. The three-month, multi-phased competition started with each team analyzing a cyber case. In the second phase, the teams received training from industry experts. The competition culminated in a real-time practical challenge with advanced cyber training held Oct. 27-28 at Leidos’ headquarters in Reston, Va.
Teams from 10 universities (in alphabetical order) – Carnegie Mellon University, Howard University, Iowa State University, Penn State University, Syracuse University, Temple University, University of Maryland, University of South Florida, University of Texas at San Antonio, and Villanova University – made it past Phase I in September. Each team received a significant award of $6,000-$12,000 to support student, faculty, and curriculum development.
It was gratifying to work with Leidos to create a student- and faculty-centric opportunity, said Dr. Munir Mandviwalla, Executive Director of Temple’s IBIT, who worked with Laurel Miller, Director, to envision the competition. The challenge and conference brought together the nation’s top cyber educational programs in management information systems, computer science, and engineering. Interdisciplinary engagement is the most effective way to solve the nation’s cyber talent crisis because it can produce industry-relevant students and knowledge.
The NCAC conference also provided a unique opportunities for meaningful dialogue between academic, industry, research, and education experts, added Mandviwalla.
One outcome from the conference is the identification of a set of strategies to enhance cyber education and research through data centric collaboration between industry and academia.