SPAWAR's Students ‘Hack’ into Navy Jobs

Release Date: 9/12/2018 10:41:00 AM​
By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Charles E. White
More than 1,000 students from around the Southwest converged on University of California, San Diego’s RIMAC Arena to compete in SD Hacks, a weekend-long, caffeine-fueled, sleep-deprived team hackathon, Oct. 12-14, 2018.

The fourth annual event was a 36-hour coding marathon focused “not so much on actual hacking,” according to returning SD Hacks team mentor Martin Miller a Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific (SSC Pacific) nanosatellite engineer, but rather on coming up with new and novel software solutions to sponsors’ challenges. 
The student motive for participation varied. Some came for financial reward, others, employment opportunity, “and some for fun” according to Miller who is also a 2013 UCSD aerospace engineering alumnus, also there to inform the “best and brightest” about the rewarding employment opportunities as scientists and engineers working in defense of their Nation.
“It’s pretty easy to sell [the] mission and the students are really receptive,” said, Miller, citing SSC Pacific job benefits like “driving your own career, helping the warfighter and being able to propose your own ideas for the Department of Defense (DoD), but we need much more awareness,” he said. “We can take students who don’t know anything about SSC Pacific and 10 minutes later are super excited to work here.”

As part of National Cyber Security Awareness Month events, SSC Pacific provided 40 cyber professionals, scientists and engineers to mentor and share their experiences in cyber innovation with up-and-coming technologists and also to guide teams participating in SSC Pacific’s challenge, which was to come up with a DoD related proposal for a chance to win interviews with the workforce recruitment office.
“The most important thing for SSC Pacific is grabbing the top talent,” said Miller, stating that the type of students who attend an event of this nature and intensity are “the best of the best” and the “type of students who will go above and beyond to really grow their careers.” 
For more information about careers with the Navy’s Information Warfare Solutions systems command, visit


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