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King joins DSU alumni on US Cyber Team

June 9, 2022

Dakota State University student Austen King joins two DSU alumni as a member of the U.S. Cyber Team traveling to Athens, Greece to compete in the first International Cybersecurity Challenge.

King is currently pursuing a degree in Cyber Operations and is a summer intern at IBM’s X-Force Red for the summer.

His interest in cyber began when one year he received a Raspberry Pi for Christmas, which enabled him to start out with a few small projects.

King, who is from Volga, S.D., chose to attend DSU because it was close to home, affordable, and has a long history of winning competitions.

DSU’s faculty deliver technical and hands-on classes that prepare students for competitions and the real world, he said.

“They also do a great job at promoting competitions in Capture The Flags (CTFs) and others such as the Collegiate Penetration Testing Competition (CPTC) and the Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (CCDC),” King said. “Through experiences like these, and classes such as the binary exploitation class and the assembly language course, I feel prepared to be a member of the U.S. Cyber Games team.”

Friends encouraged King to try out for the team. He was initially hesitant but eventually decided to compete.

After completing a CTF, several weekly team exercises, and another CTF, he awaited results with bated breath. There was another person named Austin competing for the spot, so when the announcer read off “Austen” and paused before saying the last name, King’s heart nearly stopped. Once he realized he made the team he was in complete shock.

“I’m looking to learn from some of the best on the team,” King said. “They know so much about a very wide range of topics so they could teach you almost anything you wanted to know. It’s also a great opportunity to network with some brilliant minds in cybersecurity.”

The team will compete June 14-17 in Athens, Greece.


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