High school students are getting a great boost in their skills this summer for now and the future, as a cyber camp shows students how to fight against hackers.
At Santa Rosa Junior College Petaluma campus, 50 students are learning to fight against hackers. The CyberPatriot camp is a national program which was first conceived by the Air Force Association in 2014. It has been funded by corporate donations from security and defense contractors. Some of the companies include Northrop Grumman and Boeing, AT&T, Cisco, Facebook, and MasterCard, as well as the US Department of Homeland Security.
As students learn to prevent hacking, acting to control access as administrators, they learn to protect systems warding off threats. The hope is that students will be inspired to pursue careers in cybersecurity or other STEM fields.
Department of Computer Studies faculty member Michael McKeever brought the camp the SRJC this year. “Cybersecurity has always been important, but it’s becoming more in the public awareness,” said McKeever. “Ransomware, politics, espionage in general. … We thought (the Cold War) was over, but (Russia) never really changed. It’s just the public’s figuring that out now.”