Center for Autonomy Volunteers with GenCyber TACC Camps

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January 16, 2024
Volunteers participating at GenCyber TACC Events

In December of 2023, the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) hosted two engaging cybersecurity events, "GenCyber Back@TACC" and "Level UP GenCyber Back@TACC," both aimed at educating high school students in various aspects of cybersecurity. The events offered students an opportunity to delve into online personal safety, computer networking, mobile security, cryptography, cloud computing, cybercrime, and ethics through interactive and exploratory lessons.

Volunteers from the Center for Autonomy not only helped with event logistics but also played a role in motivating students towards STEM fields. By providing insights from their own undergraduate and graduate experiences, volunteers helped students envision a future in both cybersecurity and the broader selection of STEM fields.

The introductory cybersecurity event, GenCyber Back@TACC, provided students with exploratory lessons on online personal safety, computer networking, mobile security, cryptography, cloud computing, cybercrime, and ethics. The Autonomous Systems group, represented by volunteers Neel Bhatt, Ege Bayiz, and Quentin Rommel, guided students through the event. Volunteers were responsible for facilitating the learning process, answering questions, and engaging high school students in discussions about their personal experiences from their academic journeys in STEM, thereby encouraging students to consider future studies and careers.

The Level UP GenCyber Back@TACC event catered to students with prior knowledge in cybersecurity, focusing on enhancing their skills. More interactive than its counterpart, this event included cyber-attack role-play games and in-depth discussions, providing a more advanced perspective on networking, mobile security, cryptography, and cybercrime. The participants got a taste of the cybersecurity industry as a career. Volunteers Ruihan Zhao and Cevahir Koprulu actively engaged with the students, breaking the ice, leading games, and facilitating discussions. Their contributions ensured that students not only learned but also applied their knowledge in practical scenarios.

For those interested in contributing to future GenCyber Back@TACC events or registering as a student, more information about the events and access registration details can be found on the official website: GenCyber Camps.  Additionally, prospective volunteers may contact Geoffrey Reid or Rosalia Gomez for details on how to get involved and contribute to the education of the next generation in cybersecurity.