Dakota State University students walking around campus

Preparation + opportunity = success

That's the DSU equation. We're a four-year university with nationally recognized programs, cutting-edge facilities, and the brightest thinkers. But we're also a tight-knit, inclusive community. Small class sizes mean hands-on training and individualized attention. All this with an affordable, public school price that's among the best values in the region.

Read More

Collegiate Pen Testing is real-world experience

November 9, 2021

DSU team headed to Global finals in 2022

DSU’s CPTC team qualifies for the global championship in January. Team members include: Faculty Coach Tyler Flaagan (back left), Austen King, Shane Donahue, Nathan Ord; Cody Mayer (front left), Jacob Hince, and Chirawat “Kim” Yooyuenyong.
DSU’s CPTC team qualifies for the global championship in January. Team members include: Faculty Coach Tyler Flaagan (back left), Austen King, Shane Donahue, Nathan Ord; Cody Mayer (front left), Jacob Hince, and Chirawat “Kim” Yooyuenyong.

Competitions in penetration testing are realistic, so realistic that those competing “could get a job doing exactly this,” said Dr. Tyler Flaagan, Assistant Professor of Computer and Cyber Sciences.

“Doing the penetration test, writing a report, and briefing others are exactly what companies are looking for in a junior penetration testing role,” Flaagan said.

He is faculty coach for the Dakota State team who won the Central Region Collegiate Penetration Testing Competition (CPTC) in October. This win qualified them for the global championship January 6-9, 2022, hosted by New York’s Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). They will compete against 14 other teams from the United States, Canada, the Middle East, and Europe.

The CPTC was developed by an RIT professor to mimic this real-world environment, after seeing a gap between classroom knowledge and the real workforce world. The teams must use their technical knowledge, communication abilities, and collaboration skills as they simulate a cyberattack against a fictitious company’s system to check for vulnerabilities. These weaknesses are reported to company officials, often with suggested solutions. This process is sometimes called ethical hacking.

Team captain Shane Donahue, a Cyber Operations major from San Diego, Calif., said the competition presents the teams with a unique opportunity to elevate their technical skills, and also practice their soft skills through report writing and oral presentations.

The 2021 CPTC team members include:

  • Shane Donahue, Cyber Operations, from San Diego, Calif.
  • Jake Hince, Master of Science in Computer Science from Buffalo, Minn.
  • Austen King, Cyber Operations, from Volga, S.D.
  • Cody Mayer, Cyber Operations, from Sheldon, Iowa
  • Nathan Ord, Cyber Operations, from Elburn, Ill.
  • Chirawat “Kim” Yooyuenyong, Cyber Operations, from Beresford, S.D.

Contact Us

Jane Utecht
Strategic Communications Coordinator
(605) 270-3816

Email Us