The C-factor in the Cybersecurity Equation: The Importance of Student Cybersecurity Competitions
Source:Information & Security: An International Journal,
This study explored the role of cybersecurity competitions for students’ knowledge, skills, and future interest in participants in these events. The authors conducted a survey of 41 Virginia students, registered to participate in two cybersecurity competitions in November 2021 and in April 2022. The sample includes high-school and college students, who were asked questions which can be divided in three conceptual categories: 1) experience with prior cybersecurity competitions; 2) experience with the most recently attended one at the time of the survey; 3) interest in taking part in future ones. The results from the survey reveal some intriguing patterns regarding the students’ demographics, particularly regarding first-generation students, some benefits from the cybersecurity competitions, skills that such activities help develop, the most appealing aspects of them for students, and the opportunity to interact with people of a different race/ethnicity. A discussion of the results is provided along with recommendations how such competitions can be better organized to serve the needs of the participants and encourage them to pursue a career in the field.