HELENA - Montana is pairing up with SANS Institute again, offering high schoolers the chance to learn cybersecurity skills and become eligible for the National Cyber Scholarship Competition.

Gov. Steve Bullock made the announcement Thursday.

“CyberStart America gives high school students across Montana an engaging opportunity to unlock their cybersecurity skills,” Governor Steve Bullock said in a release. “Cybersecurity is a rapidly growing field, and this competition is a great way for students who are looking towards their next steps to start exploring a rewarding career in cybersecurity.”

For last two years, Montana has had involvement with Girls Go CyberStart, a girls-only program, which still exists; however, this year's competition expanded to CyberStart America which offers the opportunity to all genders in high school. 

“Innovative programs like CyberStart America and GirlSCOUTS Go CyberStart are essential to introducing cybersecurity to the next generation that will protect our data,” Andy Hanks, Montana’s Chief Information Security Officer, said in the release. “I am glad that we have partners like SANS and the Girl Scouts of Montana & Wyoming to inspire interests in cybersecurity.”

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