La Jolla high students advance in National Youth Cyber Challenge

A team of La Jolla High School students are heading to the semifinals of the CyberPatriot, the nation's largest youth cyber defense challenge.

The five key members of the team are Patrick Sapin, George Brabon, Andy Hill, Rafael Cosman and Jason Farnum. They’ll be joined by their coach Greg Volger, who teaches computer science at LJHS, in the semi-finals on Jan. 8. They are among 51 teams advancing after the Dec. 11 second round.

CyberPatriot, an education initiative produced by the Air Force Association, is a one-of-a-kind cyber defense competition, providing high school students hands-on learning about cyber security. In round 2, the Open Division competition focused on warding off series of cyber attacks to defend virtualized computer networks.

The two-track competition has teams registered from public, private, parochial and home schools in the Open Division while JROTC units of all Services and Civil Air Patrol squadrons fill the All-Service Division. In all, the competition had more than 650 teams register to compete.

Throughout the competition, students learn how to improve and strengthen computer infrastructures and reduce risks of intrusion — all while virtually competing against their peers. Teams are scored based on how quickly and effectively they find and correct weaknesses in simulated networks.

CyberPatriot is presented by Northrop Grumman, with founding partners SAIC and the CIAS at the University of Texas-San Antonio. For more information go to



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