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Local high schoolers participate in cyber competition

Published: May. 10, 2022 at 5:29 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Kids from around our area played a 21st-century take on a classic game. It’s capture-the-flag, but from behind a keyboard.

Michael White loves this.

“I’m doing crypto..graphy like deciphering. Cryptography,” he said.

It might not be easily said or done, but it’s something this Greenbrier High School senior has studied for years.

“It took all four years to get to where I am now. I promise you it is a struggle. It is extremely hard, but after a while, it comes to your head, and you just know what to do,” said White.

White and some of his classmates used the cyber skills they learned to compete in a ‘capture-the-flag’ competition.

Tom Barnes, parsons VP of strategic cyber initiatives said: “We’re trying to build that community of interest amongst the kids. Get them involved in cyber so we can grow our future workforce.

Barnes helped run this event. More than 40 teams from across the area participated in a Jeopardy-style competition, where students use their skills to get answers. He thinks getting them exposed to cyber early is great.

“It will definitely set them up for the future. All the kids know that the tech jobs that are coming up are what’s going to be for the future, so I think you see the kids kind of leaning towards that and learning as much as they can so they can be applicable in the future when they get out,” he said.

White said: I really do want to do this as a career because it’s extremely fun.”

White is thankful to get a head start in high school. And while a cyber career is a long-term goal, in the short term...

“My goal is to go for first. I don’t know about getting first, but I am going for it,” he said.

Organizers say almost one hundred students competed in this event at the Georgia Cyber Center.

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