The Virginia Governor's Cybersecurity Cup

Governor Robert McDonnell is challenging students from the Commonwealth of Virginia to a statewide competition to recognize talented young Virginians and to help them get a solid head start on one of the fastest growing and most lucrative careers. At the same time, the competition is helping the nation fill a critical skills gap in advanced technical cybersecurity skills. Students who have interest and aptitude in information technology and cybersecurity are invited to compete for recognition, scholarships, internships, and other career-building prizes. The competitions include online learning materials to help students who may not have had any courses on the foundations of cybersecurity.

The highest scoring Virginia students in the Cyber Foundations Fall 2012 competition will be invited to an onsite live NetWars Tournament competition at George Mason University in VA on March 2, 2013, to compete in the VA Governor's Cup. The NetWars Tournament will offer students real hands-on learning experience and opportunities to meet college and university representatives, media, and representatives from the Governor's office, as well as cybersecurity professionals.

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Who qualifies?

Eligibility: All high school students enrolled in the fall of 2012 in a public or private high school (and including home schooled students) in the State of Virginia are eligible to participate for free in the Fall 2012 Cyber Foundations competition and the Governor's Cup.

What competitions are included in the Virginia Governor's Cup?

  1. Cyber Foundations:
  2. Cyber Foundations has two parts: (1) on-line tutorial and video education materials that allow students to expand their knowledge, and (2) competitive 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.

  3. NetWars:
  4. NetWars is the hands-on, interactive learning environment with a focus on skills information security professionals use in their jobs every day.

    NetWars covers topics such as system hardening, packet analysis, digital forensics, vulnerability assessment, and much more. But NetWars also has basic levels that enable young people to demonstrate they have the aptitude to excel and also gives them a fascinating real-world environment to demonstrate their skills. http://www.sans.org/cyber-ranges/netwars