For Immediate Release
Dec. 1, 2023
Adam Lowenstein
Florida Tech News Bureau or 321-674-8964


Florida Tech’s Cybersecurity Team
No. 1 in Saint Leo Competition 

Victory Continues FITSEC’s Winning Ways

MELBOURNE, FLA. — The L3Harris Institute for Assured Information FITSEC competitive cybersecurity team won the Saint Leo Capture the Flag cybersecurity tournament on Feb. 11. The victory brought a $3,500 cash prize.

The L3HIAI FITSEC team of Stephen Brustowicz, Dylan Jesse, Alex Schmith, Curtice Gough and Blake Janes bested teams from the host university as well as University of Tampa, Florida Polytechnic University and St. Petersburg College.

Florida Tech Provost and Executive Director of the L3Harris Institute for Assured Information Marco Carvalho has supported the team and sponsored the students’ travel to the tournament and has supported FITSEC since its 2019 launch.

“Cybersecurity is an extremely consequential and important field in today’s connected world, and the L3Harris Institute for Assured Information at Florida Tech is proud to help develop the next generation of cyberwarriors through our support of such an outstanding team as FITSEC,” Carvalho said. “This is our mission and our passion at L3HIAI.”

In capture-the-flag competitions, participants manipulate a computer system by hacking the system to complete a designated challenge and retrieve, or “capture,” a group of text known as the “flag” for that specific challenge.

This victory is one of several recent accomplishments for FITSEC.

The team traveled to Washington, D.C. in January for the SchmooCon security conference. FITSEC took the silver medal in the JumpWire capture-the-flag event against industry professionals. And one of the newest team members, Ph.D. candidate and wireless security expert Bobby Acha, competed in the Wireless capture-the-flag tournament, also taking a silver medal against industry professionals.

And last year concluded with more podium finishes, as Jesse and Brustowicz joined team members Louis Orcinolo and Isaiah Thomas in winning 2nd at the prestigious U.S. Cyber Challenge National Championship. Funded by the Department of Homeland Security and supported by the White House Chief Information Officer, the event pitted the nation’s best cybersecurity students against each other.

There is real-world impact from this virtual virtuosity, FITSEC primary faculty advisor TJ O’Connor noted. Team members Brustowicz, Jesse, Schmith, Gough and Janes all have secured summer internships at top spots including NASA, Research Innovations Inc., Cromulence LLC and Red Lattice.

“Their success has trampolined them into these important professional opportunities,” said O’Connor, who directs Florida Tech’s cybersecurity concentration.


PHOTO CAPTION: The winning team! FITSEC members are, front row from left, Stephen Brustowicz, Dylan Jessee and Alex Schmith, and back row from left, Curtice Gough and Blake Janes.

About Florida Institute of Technology

The premier private technological university in the Southeast, Florida Tech is a Tier 1 Best National University (U.S. News & World Report) and a Top Technical Institute (Fiske Guide to Colleges), as well as a Best Value University (Forbes) and a top 100 global university for graduate employability (GEURS). Florida Tech is known worldwide for its strengths in aerospace, advanced manufacturing, aviation, autism treatment, biomedical science, cybersecurity and machine-learning, and marine science. It offers more than 150 bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in engineering, science, computing, aeronautics, business, psychology and the liberal arts. The university is located in the dynamic and innovative city of Melbourne in the heart of the “Space Coast,” where students have been watching rocket launches from campus since the dawn of the Space Race. Learn how Florida Tech is making history and shaping the future at Find stories about our relentless pursuit of greatness at

Is this email not displaying correctly? View it in your browser