EAST Launches Cybersecurity Training Sponsored by AT&T


EAST Launches Cybersecurity Training Sponsored by AT&T
1/26/2018 10:14:11 AM

The EAST Initiative will be hosting Gov. Asa Hutchinson at its Little Rock headquarters at 9 a.m. Monday, Jan. 29, to launch the first of two training programs for middle and high school students focused on the basics of cybersecurity.

The training programs will be taught by military professionals from the Arkansas Air Guard and are sponsored by AT&T.


“This is a growing field of highly technical, high-paying jobs that are critical to our communities, and we are extremely grateful for the support of AT&T in introducing EAST students to the concepts and practices of cybersecurity,” said Matt Dozier, president and CEO of the EAST Initiative.


With data security being an almost daily topic of headlines throughout the country, the EAST Initiative, with support from AT&T and in partnership with the Arkansas Air Guard, has launched several efforts to nurture students’ interest in cybersecurity. EAST applied for and received a $20,000 grant from AT&T to fund its efforts.


In addition to the training programs, the EAST Initiative hosted a contest challenging students to crack a code embedded in a website. Doing so entered them into the contest, the winner of which will be announced at Monday’s event.


Additionally, EAST has sponsored teams to participate in the U.S. Air Force Association's CyberPatriot competition, a national contest that engages students in learning cybersecurity. Last year, 30 teams from Arkansas participated in the CyberPatriot competition. This year, 96 Arkansas teams, including 40 from EAST programs, participated.


“Every organization, large or small, needs some sort of cybersecurity measures,” said James Hopper, development coordinator for the EAST Initiative and administrator of the AT&T grant. “That means a large demand in the workforce, and EAST students will be well prepared to meet that demand.”



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