Rapid7 is looking to sponsor students at seven high schools in the Boston Metro area to participate in the 2011 Cyber Foundations Competition. This is your chance to make sure your local high school's students can participate in this great learning experience - for free! The sponsorship is our way of giving back to the local community by investing in our youth and increasing awareness around IT security risks.
Cyber Foundations is the entry-level competition in a series of increasingly challenge contests sponsored by the U.S. Cyber Challenge (USCC). USCC was chartered to identify and nurture talented Americans who can become the cyber leaders, cyber guardians and cyber warriors for United States companies, government agencies, and military services.
Opportunities for students who do well in these competitions range from gift certificates and awards, recognition by political leaders, to internships and scholarships. For example, the U.S. Navy has authorized full-four year scholarships for high school students who excel in the U.S. Cyber Challenge.
Cyber Foundations has two parts:
- On-line tutorial and video education materials that allow students to expand their knowledge and
- quizzes that allow students to demonstrate mastery.
Three topics are presented and tested: networking, operating systems, and system administration. Each topic has a separate set of educational materials and a separate test. Teachers may use the materials in class, but that is not required. Students may prepare and compete without teacher involvement; U.S. Cyber Challenge does not want to exclude talented young people who attend schools that do not have IT-savvy teachers. Students and teachers both report that the tutorial material takes only 3 or 4 hours to review, although students that spend more time and do the exercises seem to get higher scores.
The three topics are the foundation skills needed by any person hoping to become a skilled cyber professional. In addition, these three skills are in high demand throughout industry and government. The U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics ranked jobs requiring these skills as the 2nd fastest growing in the United States between now and 2018, with 155,000 new jobs opening up (see study).
Dates for the 2011 Cyber Foundations competition are:
- February 24, 2011: Deadline for high schools to register with Rapid7 for the sponsorship
- February 21 to March 3: Online tutorial for Module 1 (Networking) open.
- March 4: Competition for Module 1.
- March 7 to March 17: Tutorial for Module 2 (Operating Systems) open.
- March 18: Competition for Module 2.
- March 21 to April 7: Tutorial for Module 3 (System Administration) open.
- April 8: Competition for Module 3.
To apply for a sponsorship, please send an email with the following information to firstname.lastname@example.org by February 24:
- Name of the school
- Private/ public school
- School coordinator for the competition (First name, Last name, Email address)
The school coordinator's role is to make students aware of the competition and to distribute the login code to the students. This can be a teacher, principal or school administrator. If you have questions about the school coordinator's involvement or the program in general, please feel free to contact the organizers directly at email@example.com.
Sponsorships will be distributed on a first come, first serve basis, so be quick!