What is innovateAFITC?

Held in conjunction with the Air Force Information Technology and Cyberpower Conference (AFITC) where members of government, industry, and academia collaborate and network together to discuss the national problems we face today. Diverse, multi-skilled teams will compete in a variety of IT and cyber based challenges. This competition will enable students, CyberPatriots, IT professionals and airmen from related career backgrounds in network communications, cybersecurity, software development, design, and STEM to quickly collaborate, form bonds of Wingmanship, and share skills and experience. By tapping into the talent across functional and organizational lines, the USAF can leverage innovation in the community it serves to identify ideas and recruit talent for the enterprise better enable mission success.

innovateAFITC has become the premiere collaboration competition for Science, Technology, Engineering, Math (STEM) and Cybersecurity. This event encourages and promotes a community culture of cyber awareness and collaboration between Government, industry and academia, bringing together community leaders, cyber experts and a cadre of cyber competitors from local schools to witness and participate in real‐world IT, cyber operations and defense methods.

This event is sponsored by the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association (AFCEA) Education Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing an ethical forum for increasing knowledge, exchanging information and promoting cybersecurity awareness, education and related STEM initiatives in our community. The Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce Tech MGM, a collaboration of local industry, educational and government entities working together to connect and leverage Montgomery's unique technology related assets. CoWerx46 a co-working facility in Montgomery, Alabama. HackMGM a Code for America Brigade in Montgomery, Alabama. And, the United States Air Force Chief Information Office.

During this year’s event, competitors will work through a series of challenges to include; Lines of Code Troubleshooting, Website Attack, Network Communications, Server Hardening and Mobile Application Build/Pitch. This event aims to foster military organization collaboration with industry partners and the educational community. In addition, industry, academia and government service members are encouraged to serve in mentor, coaching and training roles as members of a team.

We want you to bring your ideas and experience to the table. Register and contribute in any role or capacity you desire!


Each team will compete in all 5 challenges below over the course of the event. Each of the below challenges will be scored separately and then the total of all scores will be used to determine an overall winner (each are evenly weighted).

Lines of Code Troubleshooting

Each team will be provided with a problem scenario and a nonfunctional programmatic solution in either Java or C#. The solution will contain multiple coding errors to be corrected.

The team will be evaluated on the corrections implemented, providing the correct answer to the problem scenario, the time it takes for the program to execute, and the time it took the team to submit their corrections from the start of their scheduled 30 minute window.

Website Attack

Each team will bring their own device to attempt this challenge, any tools the team anticipates a need for should be downloaded in advance of the event. Upon arrival at the ASU Building located at 32 Commerce St, each team will be provided with a site to register a user for. The team will then execute various Cybersecurity challenge scenarios. When the team succeeds in a scenario, a flag will be provided, and the team will submit the flag for points. Example categories for this challenge include: Forensics, Website Exploitation, and Cryptography.

The team will be evaluated on the points awarded. The judging representative will annotate the score for the team at the end of their scheduled 120 minute window.

Network Communications

Each team will be provided two different computer with similar hardware and network cabling. Both systems will have Windows Operating Systems installed and identical hardware configurations. The team will be required to troubleshoot and fix system problems in order to network both computers and share a file from the desktop on System 2 to the desktop on System 1 and vice versa. Knowledge of ethernet cabling, Windows IPv4 configuration, Ad Hoc networking, Windows Network Profiles and Windows Firewall are advantageous. Teams will be evaluated based on their ability to have both systems communicating to one another and successfully sharing a file on each of the computers in a 30 minute time period.

Server Hardening

Server Hardening is the process of securing a system by reducing its vulnerabilities. Some security measures and policies are specific to the server's role in an organization, but there are some configuration settings that should be done no matter what the server will be doing.

Using best practices, each team will be evaluated on how many tasks they have completed using an evaluator provided checklist. This checklist outlines tasks that would normally be done by a System Administrator to prepare a system for use.

Working knowledge of a Windows Server Operating System, along with the ability to use a Remote Desktop Service or Terminal Service to a Windows Server is encouraged. Teams will have 90 mins to complete this event.

Mobile Application Build/Pitch

Each team will choose a Smart City, Smart Base, Smart Campus problem, then create a prototype mobile application to address the chosen problem, and finally pitch the problem and prototype solution to a panel of judges. The application can be written in any language. The pitch presentation must state the following; team name, team members names, team member demographics, brief description of the application, major aspects/capabilities of the application, language application is written in, biggest technical challenge, and the resolution to the technical challenge. The presentation cannot exceed 5 minutes in length and must include screenshots of the application or a video driving through the application. Presentations must be posted to your assigned Google Drive by 4PM on Monday, August 27th. Every team member does NOT have to participate in the presentation delivered to the judges. Teams will be evaluated on creativity, innovation, and presentation of the application.

Teams will be evaluated on creativity, innovation, and presentation of the application.

Get Outdoors

After you’ve put your technical knowledge to the test in the challenges, come and join us for a friendly game of kickball on Tuesday, August 28th, 5:30PMkickball on Tuesday, August 28th, 5:30PM at Lagoon Park! We look forward to having fun behind the screen and on the field.

*Food trucks will be onsite for food and beverages.

Team Information

  • 2-3 person groups may register (Each student group will then be paired with a military and/or industry group) This will make an complete team.
  • It is advantageous that your group composition includes expertise within computer hardware/network communications, cybersecurity, application development and design areas to successfully compete in all challenges
  • If you are looking for a team, we can pair you with other IT experts looking to form a team. Registration will close once 12 teams have successfully registered.

  • Student and government participants are FREE.

  • Registration fee is $50 per individual.

Schedule of Events

Info Release: Challenge Sign Up Windows
Date Time
Monday, 13 August -
Networking Social
Location: CoWerx46
Date Time
Sunday, 26 August 5:00PM -
Website Attack - 120 min
Location: ASU 32 Commerce St
Date Time
Thursday, 23 August 7:00 - 9:00PM
Friday, 24 August 5:00 - 9:00PM
Saturday, 25 August 11:00AM - 9:00PM
Sunday, 26 August 10:00AM - 4:00PM
Server Hardening - 90 min
Location: Virtual
Date Time
Thursday, 23 August 7:00 - 8:30PM
Friday, 24 August 5:00 - 9:30PM
Saturday, 25 August 9:30AM - 6:30PM
Network Communications - 30 min
Location: CoWerx46
Date Time
Saturday, 25 August 10:00AM - 3:00PM
Sunday, 26 August 10:00AM - 3:00PM
Lines of Code Troubleshooting - 30 min
Location: Virtual
Date Time
Saturday, 25 August 4:00PM - 6:00PM
Sunday, 26 August 1:00PM - 4:00PM
Application Build & Pitch - 5 min
Location: Renaissance Hotel
Date Time
Monday, 27 August 5:00PM - 7:00PM
Location: Lagoon Park
Date Time
Tuesday, 28 August 5:30PM -

Register Now!