AFA Welcomes Northrop Grumman as "Presenting Sponsor" of CyberPatriot III

May 12, 2010, 14:20 ET from Air Force Association

National High School Cyber Defense Competition Set to Expand in Third Year

ARLINGTON, Va., May 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Air Force Association (AFA) today welcomed Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) as the "Presenting Sponsor" of AFA's CyberPatriot III, the national high school cyber defense competition designed to excite, educate, and motivate the next generation of cyber defenders.

The sponsorship was announced today at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.

"Northrop Grumman is proud to contribute its time and resources to ensure the success of CyberPatriot III," said Diane Miller, Northrop Grumman program director, CyberPatriot. "As a leading provider of cybersecurity solutions, it is our responsibility to help build the pipeline of qualified candidates who will eventually take on the job of securing our nation's cyber future.  It's a priority."

"We are so pleased to partner with Northrop Grumman for this premier high school cybersecurity competition," said Joseph Sutter, Chairman of the Board, AFA. "The company's participation in this program proves their dedication and support to educating the next generation of cybersecurity professionals."

As the presenting sponsor, Northrop Grumman will invest time and resources over the 2010-2011 school year to assist in coaching teams and mentoring students. The company's involvement in CyberPatriot will contribute to building a talent base in the cybersecurity field that will ultimately ensure the country's future cyber protection.

"Northrop Grumman has an extensive network and reach-back into the communities where the company's offices are located," added Sutter. We are thrilled to have its support in such roles as coaching and mentoring the teams to help bring real-world experiences to the high school population."

"One of our primary missions at AFA is promoting education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and we're so proud to expand this exciting educational effort with Northrop Grumman's generous support," said S. Sanford Schlitt, AFA's Vice Chairman of the Board for Aerospace Education. "The company's unique capability to support efforts to coach and mentor the teams will help bring real-world experiences to the high school population."

The AFA has held two previous CyberPatriot competitions with Air Force Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps (JROTC) students from 41 states and Japan. CyberPatriot III will be the first competition open to all-service JROTC students as well as students from non-military-affiliated high schools.

"Each year, our youth is increasingly exposed to new and innovative technology, as well as new and emerging cyber threats," said Miller. "Northrop Grumman recognizes the need to reach this generation now and through CyberPatriot, to educate students about these threats and teach them how to protect themselves and others."

CyberPatriot is just one of the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) initiatives in which Northrop Grumman, through its foundation, is a major partner. The company's largest STEM investment, the Northrop Grumman Foundation Weightless Flights of Discovery program, has engaged more than 1,100 teachers and reached more than 450,000 students over the past four years.

In December 2009, Northrop Grumman formed the Cybersecurity Research Consortium with three leading universities: Carnegie Mellon, Pittsburgh, Pa.; The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, Mass; and Purdue University, West Lafayette, Ind.  The consortium was created to accelerate the pace of taking novel ideas to real world application and thus address our nation's most pressing cyber threats.  

This past spring, the company also supported the Mid-Atlantic and National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competitions where college teams focus on the operational aspects of managing and protecting an existing network infrastructure.

Northrop Grumman is an industry leader in all aspects of computer network operations and cybersecurity, offering customers innovative solutions to help secure the nation's cyber future. For more about cybersecurity at Northrop Grumman, go to

Northrop Grumman Corporation's presenting sponsorship enables full nationwide deployment of CyberPatriot to occur this coming school year.  Registration for the coming CyberPatriot III competition will be open for coaches (teachers) wishing to enter a team on 13 May 2010 at

The program also benefits from the support of Founding Partners: the Center for Infrastructure Assurance and Security (CIAS) at the University of Texas at San Antonio, creator of the National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition, and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), who provides the platform for the competition with their patent-pending commercial cyber defense trainer, Cyber NEXS.  Strategic Partners General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems, Microsoft Corporation, and the Raytheon Company have also pledged significant multiyear support for the program.

The Air Force Association is a 501(c)(3), nonprofit educational organization promoting public understanding of aerospace power and the pivotal role it plays in the security of the nation. AFA has over 200 chapters nationally and internationally representing nearly 120,000 members.

SOURCE Air Force Association