EWU Cyber Team Victorious Yet Again

EWU computer science students followed up their recent victory in the Spokane Mayor’s Cup (Story below) by taking first place in the Northwest regional competition in the NCAE Cyber Games (scroll down for full results!). 

This means they will represent the university at the nationals this spring.

The National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cybersecurity (NCAE-C) inspires college students to enter the exciting realm of cyber competitions – and to possibly one day work in the field.

To win the Feb. 12 event, Eastern edged out schools like Brigham Young, Montana, Portland State and the University of Denver. The team included students Jessica Doner, Amy Washington, Sam Rasely, Andrew Upton, Jackson Wesley, Timbre Freeman, Parker Groop and Sean O’Dowd. They were coached by Stu Steiner, EWU assistant professor of computer science & electrical engineering.

The competition was 20 percent capture the flag, like Spokane Mayor’s Cup, and 80 percent securing infrastructure – meaning teams had to secure a computer network for active attacks. Points are awarded based on how long you can keep the network up and running.

EWU Cyber tallied a total of 3,400 points out of a possible 10,000 total points, edging out the closest team by just 50 points in a back and forth battle. Eastern’s 3,400 points is also the highest score in all northwest regional competitions to date.

The nationals will be held virtually April 9.

(Previous story on Mayor’s Cup below)

For the second consecutive year, Eastern Washington University computer science students have captured the Spokane Mayor’s Cup Cybersecurity Competition.

Students from EWU, Gonzaga, Whitworth and North Idaho College gather for the Spokane Mayor’s Cup.

Held Saturday, Feb. 5, at the Catalyst in Spokane’s University District, the event involved teams from area colleges who were challenged to be the first to solve a cybersecurity puzzle presented in a Capture the Flag (CTF) format.

The Mayor’s Cup is focused on developing cybersecurity talent in the greater Spokane region to help meet the growing demand for skilled workers in this growing field.

EWU students preparing for the cup competition.

EWU student teams finished one-two in the upper division category to claim the trophy. The top team included Jessica Doner, Amy Washington, Jackson Wesley, Parker Groop and Sean O’Dowd.

Spokane Mayor’s Cup trophy stays with EWU

“I am very proud and happy for our students, as the knowledge gained from this kind of event is invaluable,” says Stu Steiner, EWU assistant professor of computer science & electrical engineering. “Even more impressive is the fact the questions they answered were written by industry professionals using real-world data.”

The success of the Eastern team(s) comes as the university is emerging as a statewide leader in preparing students for the estimated 10,000 job openings in the critical cybersecurity field. EWU also recently received federal designation as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense (NCAE-C).

Also, on March 11, EWU’s Eastern Edge forum will focus on the emerging threat of cyber-attacks, and the infrastructure that private and public entities will need to protect their digital and physical assets.

The event, CYBERSECURITY: Defending the Digital Horizon, will feature an expert panel discussion, followed by roundtable breakout sessions.

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