ECPI Cyber Faculty Takes First in the World in Cyber Competition

ECPI Cyber Faculty Takes First in the World in Cyber Competition
ECPI Cyber Coach Chris Flanery

Congratulations to ECPI University - Columbia CIS Faculty and Cyber Team Coach Chris Flanery who clinched first place in the world in the 2023 Deadface Capture the Flag (CTF) cybersecurity competition on October 23rd. Flanery's victory underscores his dedication to the field and his commitment to helping his students excel.

Flanery competed solo, while most teams in the competition consisted of multiple members. He outperformed 1,224 teams worldwide to secure first place. His motivation for participating in such competitions is clear. "I do these competitions so I can help the students on the cyber team," Flanery said. "This year I was able to put in the work and time. I wanted to see if I could push myself."

Columbia Campus President Jim Rund recognizes the value of faculty members with professional experience. “Having a dozen years of cybersecurity experience, Chris stays engaged in the field of cybersecurity, and his students benefit from his up-to-date, real-world knowledge and experience. He would never ask a student to do something that he couldn't do himself,” said Rund. “Who better to teach cybersecurity than the best in the world?"

ECPI University's cybersecurity program is designed to provide students with a comprehensive learning experience that combines theoretical knowledge with hands-on training. Through a dynamic blend of classroom instruction and practical application, students in the cybersecurity program develop the necessary skills and expertise to thrive in the ever-evolving field of cybersecurity. 

Under Coach Flanery's guidance, ECPI University's Columbia campus cybersecurity team, D0wn the L1ine, secured first place at the highly acclaimed Palmetto Cyber Defense Competition (PCDC) held earlier this year in April. The team faced a highly competitive playing field, including schools like Clemson University, The Citadel, University of South Carolina, and the United States Naval Academy, to secure the gold. 

Flanery's hopes his victory serves as an inspiration to current and aspiring cybersecurity students, and is excited to share what he learned. I am proud of what I was able to do. Now it’s time to transfer more knowledge to the students.

Great work, Columbia!