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Announcing Deloitte CCI Cyber Camp Winners

Image of the three winners
The winners of the first Deloitte CCI Cyber Camp: Jason Jabbour (first place) from the University of Virginia, Christian Jackson (second place) from Old Dominion University, and Samantha Barry (third place) from George Mason University.

The Commonwealth Cyber Initiative is pleased to announce the winners of the first Deloitte CCI Cyber Camp

The winners are:

  • First Place: Jason Jabbour, systems and information engineering, senior, University of Virginia

  • Second Place: Christian Jackson, computer science, senior, Old Dominion University

  • Third Place: Samantha Barry, cybersecurity engineering, sophomore, George Mason University

“Congratulations to the winners of the inaugural Deloitte CCI Cyber Camp and to all the participating students who brought their energy and talent to the competition!” said Luiz DaSilva, CCI executive director. “These students will help solve the pressing cybersecurity challenges facing the world today. Also, thank you to the challenge creators and to Deloitte for sponsoring our first cyber camp.”

Campers came from George Mason University, Mountain Empire Community College, Northern Virginia Community College, Old Dominion University, University of Mary Washington, University of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University, and Virginia Tech. 

The camp was held three consecutive Saturdays, starting July 31 and concluding Aug. 14 with the award ceremony happening Aug. 16. 

Camp by the numbers

Fifty-four students worked on a total of 42 challenges in the areas of cyber analytics, network traffic analysis, reverse engineering, and cryptography. They also participated in resume-building workshops and mock interviews. The camp started with 286 registrants, 148 of whom competed in a qualifying event, resulting in 62 finalists. 

 

Learn more about the winners

Image of Jason Jabbour

Systems and information engineering, senior, University of Virginia

What did you… 

Learn from the camp

One of my biggest takeaways from this camp is learning how to use reverse engineering software such as Ghidra and IDA to patch assembly code. 

Like best

I really enjoyed struggling through some of the more tough capture the flag (CTF) challenges because of how rewarding it felt to finally crack the code and find the flag.

Find the most challenging

I occasionally found it tricky to find a new perspective to approach a CTF challenge with during my pursuit of finding the flag.  

What would you suggest to future campers about how to make the most of the camp?

I would offer future students the advice of approaching this camp with the desire to add new skills to their toolboxes. I personally documented the steps I used to solve some of the more difficult challenges. By doing so, I can retain all the new information I learned for future reference. 

Did you do anything fun to stay relaxed and focused during the challenges?

During the camp, I stayed relaxed by listening to a good summer playlist and solving the challenges alongside my puppy.

Hometown

Fredericksburg, Virginia

 

Image of Christian Jackson

Computer science, senior, Old Dominion University

What did you… 

Learn from the camp

I learned that it's important to pace yourself. It's not all about the scoreboard. It's important to be sure you are not just accomplishing the challenge and getting the flag, but you are learning and having fun as well. 

Like best

This is a hard question. I enjoyed the whole camp. My favorite part about the camp was the atmosphere and the attitude. Even though it was virtual, I always felt welcome and excited to start the next part or learn about the next challenge. I don't think I've ever been this excited about a 9 a.m. Zoom.

Find the most challenging

The most challenging thing about the camp was the reverse engineering challenges, and the cyber analytics challenges. This was simply because I had no prior experience with them, so I felt very uncomfortable working through them. I can honestly say, I learned so much working through them. 

What would you suggest to future campers about how to make the most of the camp?

Take advantage of all your resources from the workshops to mock interviews. Ask questions, everyone at camp always welcomed questions. Everyone was always super nice and welcoming. Don't be hard on yourself, the goal is to learn. 

Did you do anything fun to stay relaxed and focused during the challenges?

Take breaks! I cannot emphasize this enough. I sometimes would look at a problem for what seemed like forever. I would take a walk, listen to some music and come back, and boom. It would finally make sense. 

Hometown

Crewe, Virginia 

Image of Samantha Barry

Cybersecurity engineering, sophomore, George Mason University

What did you… 

Learn from the camp

During the camp I found out how much I enjoy doing cryptography challenges.

Like best

I learned a lot of new skills in network analysis and in Wireshark.

Find the most challenging

I also learned that I am not the best at reverse engineering and that is the field that I need to work on the most.

What would you suggest to future campers about how to make the most of the camp?

My recommendation to future campers is to take advantage of the fact that the challenge makers are there to help you learn. I had a problem with opening a file needed for the challenge and everyone was super nice and helpful, even on the weekend! 

Did you do anything fun to stay relaxed and focused during the challenges?

Whenever I got a little annoyed with a challenge, I just tried to take my mind off of it by watching an episode of a show or playing with my new kitten, then I would go back to the challenge with a clear mind and usually see it from a different point of view. 

Hometown

Brick, New Jersey

Contact: Michele McDonald
mmcdonald@vt.edu