April 12, 2019
Cy-Fair High School Air Force JROTC cadets (from left) Mason Herbel, Bao Nguyen, Musa Al-Ansari, Seamus Oksa, Zakary Baker and Julio Esparza recently completed their most successful season as CyberPatriot teams, including team Azure captained by Herbel, finishing ranked fifth worldwide out of 475 Air Force JROTC teams. CyberPatriot is a National Youth Cyber Education Program created by the Air Force Association to expose students toward careers in cybersecurity or other science, technology, engineering and mathematics industries. The cadets are joined by mentor and 2017 Cy-Fair High School graduate Anthony Boatcallie (right)
April 12, 2019—The Cy-Fair High School Air Force JROTC CyberPatriot teams recently completed their most successful season in the program’s three-year existence, which included a top-five ranking worldwide.
CyberPatriot is a National Youth Cyber Education Program created by the Air Force Association to expose and inspire students toward careers in cybersecurity or other science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) industries and disciplines. The competition consists of a series of simulated cyber threats to computer systems, with each being online within three or four downloaded images.
Competitors are presented with different vulnerabilities and threats, and must identify and take action to eradicate the threats. The team aspect is emphasized as each person is responsible for a different operating platform.
Teams compete in several rounds throughout the season, with the first two helping determine each team’s skill level and eligibility to move forward to subsequent rounds.
Cy-Fair fielded two teams (Azure and Burgundy) in the “All Services” category, which featured approximately 1,850 teams in all. Azure and Burgundy scored high enough to qualify for the semifinal round in February, with each competing for six hours resolving multiple cybersecurity scenarios.
Azure fell just shy of earning a trip to the national competition in Washington D.C., but the team finished the season ranked fifth out of 475 Air Force JROTC teams worldwide.
“Our cadets have put in countless hours to hone their cyber skills,” said Cadet 2nd Lt. Mason Herbel, a Cy-Fair junior and commander of the CyberPatriot team. “This will open numerous doors and opportunities for their future.”