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Members of Team Troy Tech Support from Fullerton, Calif., participate in AFA's National Youth Cyber Defense Competition on April 9 in Baltimore. The team won the Open Division category. Staff photo by Mike Tsukamoto.

The Air Force Association's (AFA) CyberPatriot program crowned the winners of the 11th season of its National Youth Cyber Defense Competition on Wednesday, April 10 in Baltimore.

CyberPatriot XI began in October 2018 with 6,387 registered teams among the open, all service, and middle school divisions of the competition. Team Troy Tech Support from Troy High School (Fullerton, Calif.) won the national championship in the Open Division, Team Byte Sized Falcons from Scripps Ranch High School Air Force JROTC (San Diego, Calif.) won the national championship in the All Service Division, and Team CyberAegis Chaos from Oak Valley Middle School (San Diego, Calif.) won the national championship in the Middle School Division.

The high school- and middle school-aged national finalists “are vital for the security of our nation,” US Cyber Command boss Gen. Paul Nakasone said at the CyberPatriot XI National Awards Banquet. “We are always looking for cyber patriots like you to join our ranks.”

 

David Hickton, former US Attorney and current director and founder of the University of Pittsburgh Institute for Cyber Law, Policy, and Security, told the students in the room he was in “awe” of them. “You have demonstrated at an early age that you are a patriot, … but I urge you to take advantage of what has been provided here and cross the threshold and become a cyber leader. In addition to the fact that you will never starve and will always have a job, our country, its future, and the world depends upon it.”

 

The full list of winning teams for CyberPatriot XI is as follows:

Open Division:

National Champion: Team Troy Tech Support, Troy High School (Fullerton, Calif.)

Runner-Up: Team Mendenhall, North Hollywood High School (North Hollywood, Calif.)

Third Place: Team CyberAegis Chobani, Del Norte High School (San Diego)

All-Service Division:

National Champion: Team Byte Sized Falcons, Scripps Ranch High School Air Force JROTC (San Diego)

Runner-Up: Team CyberD3lta, Troy High School Navy JROTC (Fullerton, Calif.)

Third Place: Team Roosevelt Rough Riders, Engineering and Technologies Academy at Roosevelt High School Army JROTC (San Antonio)

Middle School Division:

National Champion: Team CyberAegis Chaos, Oak Valley Middle School (San Diego)

Runner-Up: Team CyberAegis Kronos, Design 39 Campus (San Diego)

Third Place: Team CyberAegis Aether, Oak Valley Middle School (San Diego)

AT&T Mobile Device Component Winner:

Team Byte Sized Falcons, Scripps Ranch High School Air Force JROTC (San Diego)

Open Division/Overall Cisco Networking Challenge Winner:

Team Troy Tech Support, Troy High School (Fullerton, Calif.)

All Service Division Cisco Networking Challenge Winner:

Team Roosevelt Rough Riders, Engineering and Technologies Academy at Roosevelt High School Army JROTC (San Antonio)

Middle School Division Cisco Networking Challenge Winner:

Team CyberAegis Kronos, Design 39 Campus (San Diego)

Northrop Grumman awarded $51,500 to the Open and All Service winners of CyberPatriot XI, bringing its total scholarship contribution to more than $450,000 since becoming presenting sponsor in 2011. Scholarships are awarded to each member of the first place, runner-up, and third place teams in the two divisions.

Betty Hemby of The Boeing Company and Meghan Barnes of AT&T were awarded the CyberPatriot Order of Merit, recognizing their sustained superior achievement in promoting the STEM education objectives of the program.

“With the generous support of Northrop Grumman and our other benefactors, we have been able to grow remarkably every year, reaching more and more students of all backgrounds and attracting them to STEM education and careers,” CyberPatriot National Commissioner Bernie Skoch said. “The champions we crowned this week in Baltimore are brilliant competitors in a field our nation so desperately needs them in. We congratulate them, along with all of our thousands of participants nationwide. We look forward to yet another exciting—and even more challenging—season this coming year.”

CyberPatriot, the nation's largest and fastest growing youth cyber education program, is AFA's flagship STEM program dedicated to strengthening cyber skills among students. The program features the National Youth Cyber Defense Competition for high school and middle school students, AFA CyberCamps, an Elementary School Cyber Education Initiative, the Cyber Education Literature Series, and CyberGenerations, a program promoting senior citizen cyber awareness.