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SV students named National Cyber Scholars

Three Seneca Valley students have been named National Cyber Scholars by the National Cyber Scholarship Foundation (NCSF) as a result of their demonstrating exceptional cyber security expertise in a challenging online cyber security training program, CyberStart America. Cyber Scholars

In recognition for their remarkable achievements, freshmen Sawyer Shoemaker and Madeline Zimmer along with senior Haihan Xu have each earned a scholarship to attend the Cyber Foundations Academy with the chance to earn a GIAC Foundational Cybersecurity Technologies Practitioner Certification (GFACT), a package valued at over $3,000. 

Upon successful completion, these students will be offered an additional chance to take one of two higher level SANS courses with an attempt to earn a Global Information Assurance Certification (GIAC).  The GIAC provide the highest and most rigorous assurance of cyber security knowledge and skill available to industry, government, and military clients across the world.

The National Cyber Scholarship Foundation recognizes high school students who have demonstrated exceptional cybersecurity prowess and who wish to pursue a career in a growing field in critical need of their talent. The NCSF mission is to identify and develop the next generation of cyber professionals. Each and every student who participated in this competition has the potential to develop their skills and build a successful career in cybersecurity.

“This is an incredible program that provides a valuable opportunity for our students to gain marketable skills in an area of extraordinarily high need,” said Mr. Dean Walker, Seneca Valley Senior High School Gifted Support teacher. “These three students have wisely taken advantage of this opportunity and performed at a very high level.  I’m very proud of their achievements and look forward to seeing what they accomplish next.” 

There are several qualification pathways to gain a National Cyber Scholarship, including CyberStart America, a free online program that helps students discover their interest in cybersecurity and develop their talent and skills. The NCSF offers $5 million in scholarships to top-ranking competitors. The highest-scoring eligible CyberStart players will become National Cyber Scholars and will be invited to participate in the Cyber Foundations Academy.

To learn more about CyberStart America, visit their website at


Posted: May 23, 2023