CyberDay LA - 2015

Cyberathletes Converge at Cal Poly Pomona for CyberPatriot Competition

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There’s a new generation of competitors known as cyberathletes. While their sport lacks bats, balls or full-contact tackling, teams huddle around laptops with passion comparable to the greatest athletes in mainstream sports.

More than 400 high school and middle school cyberathletes gathered at Cal Poly Pomona’s College of Business Administration Sept. 12 for CyberDay LA – 2015, a one-day event headlined by a CyberPatriot competition that saw some of the state's top teams compete for points and medals.

The tone for the day was set early as students gathered in the CBA’s courtyard for breakfast and morning speeches. Speakers like Cal Poly Pomona’s President Coley and Northrop Grumman’s cybersecurity group director of operations Diane Miller excited the crowd not only about the competition, but also future opportunities available after graduation.

Following the introductions, students broke into subsets based on age and skill level. Beginners spent the morning in a group learning the basics of cybersecurity and the CyberPatriot competition format while intermediate students were housed in a seperate room refining their competitive cybersecurity skills.

Advanced high school action saw top CyberPatriot powerhouses face off in a pair of teams from North Hollywood High School and a short-handed squad from Franklin High School. North Hollywood High School sent two teams to compete at the finals in Washington D.C. last year and is the home of Team Azure, the 2014 national champions.

Despite only fielding a two-person team, Franklin High School’s advanced CyberPatriot team consisted of returners from last year's national team and gave both North Hollywood High School groups a run for their money, grinding out a second place finish that went down to the last minute. Franklin Saber was sandwiched between first place Team Togo and bronze winners Team Fritz.

North Hollywood High School also enjoyed success in the beginner’s category where its appropriately-named Gold Team finished atop the heap with second-place going to Sun Valley and the bronze medalist Canoga High Hunters rounding out the list of winners. Intermediate competition saw Poly lead the pack, followed by HP-Robotic and Cleveland.

The CyberPatriot National Youth Cyber Education Program was created by the Air Force Association and Los Angeles Unified School District has been recognized as a CyberPatriot Center of Excellence and it was selected to pioneer the program in middle schools.

Cal Poly Pomona’s College of Business Administration has a longstanding relationship with Los Angeles Unified School District and has hosted similar cybersecurity events. The CBA’s Computer Information Systems department is nationally recognized for being on the forefront of cybersecurity education.