• Multiyear grant to support cyber competitions through 2016
  • Program expands to middle schools and internationally

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md., March 14, 2013 -- The Northrop Grumman Foundation announced today that it will continue as presenting sponsor of CyberPatriot, the national high school cyber defense competition, with a $4.5 million, three-year grant to the Air Force Association (AFA).

As the largest contributor to the program since 2010, the Northrop Grumman Foundation will support CyberPatriot competitions VI through VIII, and will build on the program's extraordinary growth by expanding into middle schools and internationally. This support will help build a global pipeline of cyber defenders to meet the growing demand for cyber pros to keep our networks safe.

CyberPatriot was created by the AFA to inspire high school students toward careers in cybersecurity or other science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines critical to the nation's future. The CyberPatriot V National Finals Competition will take place tomorrow at the Gaylord National Hotel and Convention Center at National Harbor, Md., near Washington, D.C.

"We are thrilled to partner with the Air Force Association and again be the presenting sponsor of CyberPatriot. We've seen explosive growth in the competition, with students from diverse backgrounds and from every corner of the U.S. participating and getting excited about careers in cybersecurity," said Sandra Evers-Manly, president of the Northrop Grumman Foundation. "We share a mission to help improve the quality of STEM education from early grades through the university level. Through CyberPatriot, we can reach out into schools across the country and around the world to teach and inspire students to explore the exciting world of cybersecurity."

Since Northrop Grumman first signed on as presenting sponsor, CyberPatriot has grown by nearly 86 percent. It grew from 661 registered teams in 2010 to more than 1,200 teams registered in 2012, competing from all 50 states and U.S. Department of Defense dependent schools in Europe and the Pacific, as well as teams from Canada.

"This commitment will allow AFA to expand the program to middle schools, which is a pivotal time when students are determining their interest in the STEM disciplines," said Diane Miller, Northrop Grumman program director, CyberPatriot. "This age group is operating in a cyber-enabled world so it's critical that we increase their awareness of cyber safety, cyber defenses and the life skills needed to succeed in this burgeoning career field. Our continued commitment will also ensure international expansion of CyberPatriot to cultivate young talent and build a global team of qualified cyber defenders."

In addition to the foundation's support, Northrop Grumman Corporation contributes employee volunteers, expertise and resources to CyberPatriot, as well as scholarship funds for the winning teams. The company also provides internships to a number of CyberPatriot competitors, as do other industry and government organizations. These internship opportunities serve both CyberPatriot participants and cybersecurity employers as the nation strives to fill the critical need for cyber professionals.

"The CyberPatriot program is helping to prepare college- and career-ready students with not just technical skills, but also with valuable experience in teamwork, leadership and critical thinking," said Bernie Skoch, CyberPatriot commissioner. "None of what we have done, none of the students we have reached, none of the difference we are making in attracting students to STEM would be possible without the generous support of the Northrop Grumman Foundation. Northrop Grumman's involvement is more than financial; it also provides our competitors with superb insights, technical expertise and other support. We look forward to a long and productive relationship with our presenting sponsor as we work together to improve STEM education in America."

Northrop Grumman is committed to supporting cybersecurity education, training and technology. In addition to CyberPatriot, the foundation supports other cyber STEM initiatives including the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC) CyberScholars program.  The corporation supports the University of Maryland Advanced Cybersecurity Experience for Students program, leads the Cybersecurity Research Consortium , is partnered with the UMBC Research Park Corporation on the Cync incubator program, and operates its own Cyber Academy. For more about Northrop Grumman in cybersecurity, go to www.northropgrumman.com/cybersecurity . For more about CyberPatriot, go to www.uscyberpatriot.org

The Northrop Grumman Foundation supports diverse and sustainable programs for students and teachers. These programs create innovative education experiences in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. For more information please visit www.northropgrumman.com/foundation .

  CONTACT: Mark Root
         703-280-2739 (office)
         571-425-2132 (cell)
         Marynoele Benson
         703-556-1651 (office)
         703-282-5428 (cell)

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