17th annual competition trains the next generation of cybersecurity professionals amid current skills shortage
SAN ANTONIO (April 25, 2022) – The University of Central Florida competed against nine other student-led teams to become champion of the 2022 National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (NCCDC), presented by the CIAS in partnership with the competition’s presenting sponsor Raytheon Intelligence & Space, a Raytheon Technologies business. This year, more than 1,500 competitors from 171 schools across the country participated in the 17th annual NCCDC, held in San Antonio from April 21-23.
As the nation’s largest collegiate competition of its kind, this year’s NCCDC tasked competitors with the scenario of managing, operating and defending the network infrastructure of a brick-and-mortar gaming retailer that has evolved into an online gaming provider, while fending off a group of live Red Team hackers.
Hosted and organized by the Center for Infrastructure Assurance and Security (CIAS) at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), the competition also provided competitors access to cybersecurity professionals from its presenting sponsor Raytheon Technologies, the CIAS, UTSA and more.
“One of the primary obstacles preventing many students from considering a career in cybersecurity is a lack of mentorship, which is what makes NCCDC so rewarding for both competitors and volunteers alike,” said Jon Check, senior director of Cyber Protection Solutions (CPS) for Raytheon Intelligence & Space. “At Raytheon Intelligence & Space, we pride ourselves in helping the next generation feel comfortable and confident in their understanding of cybersecurity. Not just in a traditional classroom setting, but through real-world scenarios and hands-on experiences, as well as access to our volunteers throughout the tournament.”
As winners of the 2022 NCCDC, University of Central Florida brings home the coveted Alamo Cup trophy. This is the second consecutive year that the University of Central Florida has won the competition. Additionally, Dakota State University placed second and Stanford University came in third place during this year’s competition.
“Whether held virtually or in-person, Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (CCDC) events provide a valuable and unique educational experience that helps students develop the cybersecurity skills our country urgently needs,” said Dwayne Williams, director of NCCDC and associate director at the CIAS. “With support from Raytheon Intelligence & Space, we’ve been able to keep CCDC a strong and vibrant program throughout the pandemic. Training the next generation of cyber professionals is critical and we have to continue to find ways to ensure that happens.”
More information on NCCDC, including how your organization or university can get involved in the competition, can be found at https://www.nationalccdc.org/.