Deaf students learn about cybersecurity at Gencyber Camp


Twenty-two deaf and hard of hearing students from seven different states traveled to Huntsville this week for the Gencyber Camp.

UAH’s Center for Cybersecurity Research and Education and the Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind are hosting the camp. It’s sponsored by the National Science Foundation and the National Security Agency, and it’s the first to serve deaf and hard of hearing students.

The NTID Regional STEM Center (NRSC) is a partnership between the Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind (AIDB) and the National Technical Institute for the Deaf in Rochester, New York. The NRSC helps provide STEM based instruction and strategies for students who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing throughout the Southeast. The NRSC also has national initiatives in Cyber Security, Robotics, and Coding.

The high schoolers are spending the week learning about cyber security and engineering. They will learn several skills from cryptography to digital forensics.

The STEM Bus from the Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind traveled to the camp this week to give the students here more opportunities to learn about cyber security and engineering. The goal of the Gencyber Camp is to expose students who are deaf and hard of hearing to cyber security and computer science.

Gencyber Camp Director, Jesse Hairston, said, “It’s definitely an underserved area. Cybersecurity isn’t taught at a lot of different schools right now, so we’re trying to make that more abundant. We want to make sure the deaf and hard of hearing schools don’t get left out either.”

Cybersecurity Math and Science Trainer for NRSC, Jason Roop, said, “There’s a lot of STEM jobs out there currently, so we need to promote education all over the country, and STEM typically is very visual and that pairs well with deaf individuals.”

They also hope to get more students involved in robotics tournaments.

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