The National Cybersecurity Center is designated a Center of Excellence for CyberPatriot, the world’s largest cybersecurity competition for middle and high school students.
CyberPatriot is the Air Force Association’s National Youth Cyber Education Program, created 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 a Center of Excellence, we assist the entire state of Colorado in helping middle and high schools setup up and establish their own cybersecurity program and CyberPatriot affiliate. We help schools by first giving teachers the training necessary to run a CyberPatriot program at their school. The NCC provides teachers with the opportunity to earn their own industry level certification while they are teaching. In addition to setting up the program, the NCC also provides students with additional resources that will also help them earn their own certification.
Other CyberPatriot Programs that The NCC provides to the entire community is:
Held during the summer months, the NCC hosts cybersecurity camps for students in grades 6-12. The CyberCamps emphasize fun, hands-on learning of cybersecurity principles that are relevant and applicable to everyday life. Through camps, students learn the importance of cyber safety and how to protect their personal devices and information from outside threats. Standard AFA CyberCamps teach beginner students the basics of cybersecurity, while Advanced AFA CyberCamps incorporate more complex concepts geared towards students who have previously participated in a camp or in the cyber defense competition.
The CyberPatriot Elementary School Cyber Education Initiative (ESCEI) is a set of three interactive learning modules aimed at increasing the awareness of online safety and cybersecurity principles for K-6 students. The NCC either visits schools to present this material in person or provides the material directly to the school for teachers to present. Supplemental activities are also available.
The NCC presents a series of cyber safety books to schools. The first book is Sarah the Cyber Hero. The book is a pre-K reader for younger children that introduces the topic of cybersecurity to early elementary youth. Digital and hard copies of the book are available free to teachers that want to present cyber safety to elementary school students.
The Tech Caregiver Program is a companion to CyberGenerations. As a Tech Caregiver, student and adult volunteers can complete a training course, pass an exam, and receive a certification to teach basic security measures to senior citizens in a way that is easy to understand. The goal is this program is to give back to the community by helping older populations recognize, understand, and safely avoid the online scams they are so often the target of. The NCC’s interns will be trained to give this training.
CyberGenerations, the Senior Citizen’s Cyber Safety Initiative, is designed to teach older individuals about password hygiene, malware and ransomware, marketing and fraud scams, and social media awareness. More importantly, CyberGenerations offers resources to victims of cyber scams. The NCC provides workshops to groups that would like to have this presented to their organization as well as offers a self-guided curriculum.