Baker College Cyber Security students win state championship for 3rd year in a row

FLINT (WJRT) (03/18/18) — They did it again.

Students from Baker College of Flint’s Cyber Security program have won a top honor in the state for the third year in a row.

“I’m very proud. I couldn’t be more proud,” said Baker College Cyber Security Adviser Doug Witten after hearing his group of students won the Michigan Collegiate Cyber Defense Network state championship in February.

“They have worked their tail off literally. Training is pretty much every day in our labs, the whole weekend,” he said.

Witten says the competition is much like a cat and mouse game.

“They set you up as if you’re a small company. You’ve got one hour to protect them. After that hour is up, a team of professional hackers is trying to break in,” he said.

And as you can imagine, it’s no walk in the park.

“It’s basically a giant adrenaline rush the entire 8 hours your there,” said recent Baker College graduate Jeff Matter.

Student teams are scored by their ability to detect and respond to threats while keeping everything up and running.

“Us as defenders, we have to be cognizant of every possible way that they could get in,” Witten said.

And so far they’ve done a pretty good job, winning the state championship three years in a row; and next weekend, they move onto regionals.

Baker College will be one of 11 other schools that will compete in the regionals. If they win that, they then go to nationals.

“We’ve won the state championship 6 out of 9 years, and 2 midwest, 2 national, the only way to do that is absolutely positively out work them and that’s what we’re striving to do,” Witten said.

Baker College of Flint defeated other colleges in Michigan including Jackson College and Eastern Michigan University.

The cyber defense team will advance to compete in the 2018 Midwest Regional Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition on March 23rd – 24th, 2018 at Moraine Valley Community College in Palos Hills, Illinois.