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Information Technology and Administrative Management

College of Education and Professional Studies

Inside the Pacific Rim Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition with ITAM

“The Red Team saw what I was doing and cut me off before I could complete the process each time. I tried to run a batch file to change the settings, but was cut off before it completed . . And so began the taunting.”

At the Pacific Rim Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (PRCCDC), seven CWU ITAM Cybersecurity students were under attack from professional hackers. Accompanied by their coach Dr. Jackson Muhirwe, Assistant Professor of Cybersecurity in Information Technology and Administrative Management (ITAM), these ITAMers had a rare opportunity to defend organizational data and infrastructure from cyber threats inside and outside in addition to ensuring that internal users continued having optimal services enabling them to carry out their duties.

Team Captain Kristi Glasgall said, “PRCCDC was one of the best experiences I’ve ever been through. It was mentally draining, and I am still wiped out from the experience… but I would do it all over again this weekend if we had the chance. Knowing that you’re going toe-to-toe with some of the industry’s best hackers is such a rush and absolutely terrifying.”

The high demand ITAM cybersecurity degrees are new to campus, with student enrollments surpassing the 200 mark for the undergraduate and graduate programs.  This is the department’s first statewide competition.  Dr. Muhirwe says, “The students performed beyond their own expectations and those of the organizers. The students identified many compromised systems from the onset. Yet, the students quickly patched up the systems and changed default usernames and passwords. Among the systems they were managing, they found some systems they have never used before in class but quickly learned to adapt to the new environments. These students felt the stress and excitement of being under constant attack from the adversary.”

The PRCCDC also provided networking opportunities and students met one on one with recruiters from private and public organizations which included Amazon web services, Ratheon, Casaba, Boeing and the FBI. The seniors are now being courted for jobs by these companies as a result of the competition.  The ITAM juniors on the team can’t wait to start preparing for next year’s PRCCDC competition.

We want to congratulate all of the ITAMers competing at the PRCCDC:
Kristi Glasgall, Post-Bac (Captain)
Nick Smith, Senior
Brendon Maitland, Senior
German Godinez, Junior
Brian McDougall, Junior
David Rice, Senior
Kolbe Stevenson, Senior

Ready to start your career in Cybersecurity? Check out these programs from ITAM:


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