Leilehua High Students Headed to CyberPatriot National Finals Competition

Photo caption, from left to right: Coach LTC (Ret.) Nick Spiridigliozzi, Cadets Seth Allen, Kawika Lavarias, Sharon Thepsenavong, David Williams, and Michael Grajales, and Mentor SMSgt (Ret.) Mike Herr.
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Photo caption, from left to right: Coach LTC (Ret.) Nick Spiridigliozzi, Cadets Seth Allen, Kawika Lavarias, Sharon Thepsenavong, David Williams, and Michael Grajales, and Mentor SMSgt (Ret.) Mike Herr.

REPORT FROM THE DOE – WAHIAWA – Leilehua High School is making a return to the national CyberPatriot Finals after finishing as the top Army JROTC qualifier in the nation. The “Mighty Mules” will be one of 14 finalists in the All Service Division at CyberPatriot V – the premier national high school cyber defense competition scheduled for March 14-15 in Washington, D.C. 

The Leilehua JROTC team won the Army Service Division Championship at last year’s national meet. The CyberPatriot team members are Sharon Thepsenavong, Kawika Lavarias, Seth Allen, Michael Grajales and David Williams. They are led by coach and Senior JROTC Army Instructor LTC (Ret.) Nick Spiridigliozzi, team mentor SMSgt (Ret.) Mike Herr of the U.S. Air Force, Army Instructor MSG (Ret.) Ramon Ramos, Army Instructor MSG (Ret.) Bryan Wyatt. 

This year’s two-track competition had public, private and home schools registered in the Open Division, while Junior ROTC units, Naval Sea Cadet Corps, and Civil Air Patrol squadrons filled the All Service Division. In all, more than 1,200 teams registered to participate, representing all 50 states, U.S. Department of Defense Dependent Schools in Europe and the Pacific, and Canada.


“Each year this competition draws in very determined students who demonstrate great energy, motivation and excitement in their involvement with CyberPatriot,” said Bernie Skoch, CyberPatriot Commissioner. “We have to congratulate all the students for their hard work, and we look forward to the great amount of enthusiasm they will bring with them to the National Finals Competition in March.” 

The All Service Division began with 806 teams registered. After two spirited rounds of competition, 46 teams advanced to the third round. Now, the group has been narrowed to the final 14, and each team will receive all-expenses-paid trip to the CyberPatriot National Finals Competition at the Gaylord National Hotel and Convention Center, in National Harbor, Maryland, where teams will compete face to face and defend virtual networks from a professional aggressor team. The Open Division also sends 12 teams to the National Finals Competition. The top team from each division will be announced at an awards banquet concluding this year’s competition.

CyberPatriot is presented by the Northrop Grumman Foundation, with founding partners Science Applications International Corporation and the Center for Information Assurance and Security at the University of Texas-San Antonio. CyberPatriot is also a member of the U.S. Cyber Challenge (USCC), a national coalition of public-private sector entities collaborating to enhance the workforce with the next generation of cyber security professionals.For more information and a list of all the advancing All Service finalists, please visit the CyberPatriot website at www.uscyberpatriot.org





  1. i just have a feeling,i'm getting bad vibes about what our government is doing to our youngsters.this cyberPatriot project is military-industrial-congressional-media-complex on steroids.the authoritarians are brainwashing our young men and women to worship statism,militarism,imperialism and colonialism.cyber security is all aboutr protecting and strenthening the government,military and all the cronies and rent seekers.

  2. CyberPatriot is NOT about that ar all, "Shaftalley." It does not promote the military AT ALL, and it is entirely defensive in nature at all times. It ishas two divisions, one for JROTC, Civil Air Patrol, and Sea Cadets, and another for ANY HIGH SCHOOL. At no time is the military recruiting the participants.

    The ONLY military connection (if it even is one) is that the Air Force Association, a non-profit organization that promotes technical education, supporting military members and their families, and advocating for a strong national defense, is the program creator.

    All of the education is about cyber safety and how to defend a computer netowork against hackers. That is it.

  3. hi Citizen. are you serious? if you do a google search on all the sponsors of cyberpatriot,they are all tied in with alot of gov't. agencies and defense contractors.let's start with northrop grumman.they build Drones for the military.Drones have killed thousnds of innocent civilians in Yemen,Pakistan,afghanistan.at least 168 of those killed were children. Science Applications International Corporation(SAIC) is an american defense company headquars in mclean,va. works extensively with Dept. of Defense,Dept. of Homeland Security, National Security Agency. the Air Force Association promotes strong military.a lobbying group.and the Center for Information Assurance and Security supplies graduates to NSA. our country is turnig into a hi-tech Police-State.

    • What do you think of Obama's "Death List" the NY Times printed? And what do you know of the numbers of killed by Drones under Obama vs. George W. Bush?

  4. the military-industrial-complex is here to stay.and there is nothing i ca do about it.and if northrop grumman were to cancel all their work with military,some other corporation would gladly take it's place.and who am i to judge these youngsters for choosing a career in cyber"security"?who knows,maybe my pension plan has northrop in the portfolio! i just want to try to make people aware of the dangers to their freedom and civil liberties that abuses by governments happen.

  5. Trust me, Shatalley, I know. I REALLY know, LOL.

    There is no military recruiting allowed. The sponsors are at arm's length. The curriculum is available for anyone to look at on-line, and it is provided by the University of Texas at San Antonio. There are no secrets here.

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