Central High cyber defense team takes home state title

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Cape Girardeau is developing a reputation as a force in cyber security training.

Southeast Missouri State University's cyber defense students have already made an impression by winning competitions over the last several years, but more recently, students working on cyber security training made an impression at the high school level.

Central High School's cyber defense team, which is part of the Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFJROTC), took home a state title in cyber defense in its first year competing, thanks to coaching from the local university students.

As reporter Marybeth Niederkorn reported, the cyber defense competition is part of CyberPatriot, a national program by th eAir Force Association for elementary and high school students.

Central's team competed against 14 other teams from Missouri (and 5,000 across the country).

Col. Mike Goodin, instructor with Central's AFJROTC program, said the team missed nationals by 22 points, but the team was proud of its first-year effort.

"We have our sights set on rising," Goodin said.

The partnership between the university and high school students was rewarding for both parties.

University students provided mentorship and technical support, explaining concepts and helping the students train for the competition.

Congrats to the Central AFJROTC students for their first-year success and thanks goes to the university students who showed leadership by helping guide them through the process.

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