Sierra College Team Wins 2021 NorCal Cyber Mayor’s Cup Students Place First in Greater Sacramento Region CyberSecurity Competition

April 30, 2021

A team of Sierra College students was awarded first place in the recent NorCalCyber Mayors Cup, which brings awareness to cybersecurity careers and provides students an opportunity to engage in team-based learning. The NorCalCyber Mayors Cup culminates with a competition hosted on the Cyber Skyline platform, the same platform that is used by the well-known National Cyber League (NCL).

The Greater Sacramento region’s 1st place award went to Sierra Hackers of Sierra College, with students Ahmad Kamal, Jonathan Lee, Nathan Hughes, and Robert Romano guided by Coach Alex Torres.

“Sierra College is focused on providing education and training to meet the needs of students, the community, and local business, and cybersecurity professionals are in demand,” said Amy Schulz, Dean of Business and Technology at Sierra College. “We offer a complete curriculum in information technology and cyber security along with our participation in initiatives like the NorCalCyber Mayor’s Cup.”

Throughout the month-long preparation, students had access to a cyber gymnasium to practice their skills in several categories including:

  • Open-Source Intelligence
  • Cryptography
  • Log Analysis
  • Network Traffic Analysis
  • Linux

Schulz also expressed thanks to Faculty coach Alex Torres “who selflessly shared his talents and time to guide our students in this important work, which will serve them beyond the actual competition. In addition, IT faculty chair Shawn Monsen has provided the vision and leadership to grow cybersecurity at Sierra College. We are grateful for the dedicated cybersecurity faculty to bring these opportunities to our students.”

In the final competition, student participants were given three hours to answer questions on the above topics.

“The experience I had in the Mayor’s Cup was fantastic,” said Ahmad KamaI, Sierra College student and member of the Sierra Hackers team. “The material and scenarios provided in the challenges were very clear and thought out.” Sierra College was also recognized in 2019 as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CDE) awarded by National Security Agency (NSA) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

More information on opportunities in cybersecurity at Sierra College as well as the NorCalCyber Mayor’s Cup is available at and

About Sierra College

The Sierra Joint Community College District is rising to the needs of our community. Sierra College serves 3,200 square miles of Northern CA with campuses in Roseville, Rocklin, Grass Valley, and Truckee. With approximately 125 degree and certificate programs, Sierra College is ranked first in Northern California (Sacramento north) for transfers to four-year universities, offers career/technical training, and classes for upgrading job skills. Sierra graduates can be found in businesses and industries throughout the region. More information at