WHAT IS CYBERPATRIOT?
CyberPatriot, the National Youth Cyber Education Program, was created by the Air Force Association (AFA) to inspire K-12 students toward careers in cybersecurity or other science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines critical to our nation’s future. As part of our squadron STEM initiatives, cadets have the opportunity to participate in this annual competition with teams of high school and middle school students acting as newly hired IT professionals tasked with managing the network of a small company.
In the rounds of competition, teams are given a set of virtual images that represent operating systems and are tasked with finding cybersecurity vulnerabilities within the images and hardening the system while maintaining critical services. Teams compete for the top placement within their state and region, and the top teams in the nation earn all-expenses-paid trips to Baltimore, Maryland for the National Finals Competition where they can gain national recognition and scholarship money.