PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y. -- Nathan VanDyke, a high school math and computer science teacher from Minnesota, found himself in Westchester recently in a class full of his peers learning about Raspberry Pi, a pocket-size computer on which one can run various cybersecurity software.
“This is really a whole new world for us,’’ said VanDyke, who is working to with the Minnetonka Public Schools in a western suburb of Minneapolis-St. Paul, to create a new computer science department. “Cybersecurity will be a major area of study and we need to prepare our students for this field.’’
VanDyke was one of 25 high school teachers from 10 states who were at Pace University from July 14 to 22 to attend a program at the Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems. The school is the only one in the tri-state area to host the teachers’ cybercamp as a part of the national GenCyber program funded by the National Security Agency to promote cybersecurity education at the K-to- 12 level.
Teachers weren't the only ones heading back to school. A second GenCyber program was held for 30 high school students from across the tri-state area during the same time. Rachel Paul, a student at Kallam High School in Virginia Beach, Va., traveled to New York to participate in the camp, staying with her grandparents in the area. “I've wanted to pursue a career in cybersecurity,” said Paul. “I have learned so much at this camp about cybersecurity from the professors through working with SeaPerch with Chief McAbee and others from the Navy. Chief McAbee showed us how the Navy personnel train online.”
Paul’s sister’s email was once hacked by someone in Saudi Arabia, motivating her to learn more about the growing field. “I helped her reset her password and taught her how to be more careful online to prevent future hackers from getting her email address,” said Paul. “I really want to help people and maybe work for the NSA one day.”
To learn more about the cybersecurity programs offered at Pace's Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems, click here.