Governor visits PCHS cyber security class

By BROOKE J. WOOD

brooke@southwesttimes.com

During his visit to a cyber security class at Pulaski County Public Schools, Gov. Terry McAuliffe told students they might one day work for the state if they seek to go that route.

McAuliffe also handed out gold Governor’s coins during the late afternoon visit to students whose robots passed coding experiments by following their programming to the correct spot.

“He was viewing students creating code and then downloading the code commands to the robot that carried out the instructions. He saw a lot of trial and error, but that is what programming is initially. The commands were basic and the students who kept it simple really did the best,” explains Lincoln Whittaker, the high school’s instructional technology resource teacher.

The EV3 robots only arrived on Monday, and students in the cyber security course began assembling them Tuesday.  The kits included a box of parts and instructions.

“It was a huge task to get them from assembly to operational in two meetings, but our kids rose to the occasion as usual,” Lincoln shared.

“A full cyber security course is taught during the school day,” Lincoln points out. “The cyber camp extension is focusing more on basics so when students take the course they will have background knowledge. We are also going to visit local companies that  provide cyber security services.”

Lincoln said students were “excited” by the Governor’s visit.

“I think the two biggest things the students took away from the visit were that if they get a degree in cyber security the state will pay for the training if they work for the state for two years.  I also overheard a couple of students discussing the governors statement that starting pay in the cyber security field is $88,000 a year.”

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