Congratulations to the winners of the 2022 Junior Secondary
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Aspirations Program (ATSIAP) State Final Challenge.
The challenge, developed in collaboration with Griffith University, was titled #ProtectingKnowledge and was themed on cryptography and its use in cyber security to protect sensitive information, drawing on the traditional knowledges and practices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the use of message sticks to encode messages.
Teams of students explored the fundamentals of cyber security and the role of cryptography in protecting sensitive information for the community. Teams learned about the offence and defence against different ciphers and applied learned techniques to solve a series of weekly online tasks such as cracking codes, creating an encoded message stick and delivering a persuasive speech.
Mirani State High School was the overall winner, with the highest score across the challenge categories.
Throughout the challenge, students were supported by First Nations Strategy and Partnership staff, Griffith University experts and PhD students from the School of Information and Communication Technology, and guest speakers from the State Library of Queensland and the cybersecurity industry.
For more information, or to find out how to get involved in 2023, contact
firstname.lastname@example.org or (07) 3513 5812.
Mirani State High School (Sorayah Cross, Ellie Feldman and Cobi Marshall-Matheson)
Speaker Sorayah Cross convinced the audience that all message sticks currently held by museums and institutions should be rightfully returned to Country to their Traditional Owners. Message sticks tell the stories of ancestors, culture, history, heritage and tradition, and are key and centre of language and how we can connect to the past.
Toowoomba State High School (Coby Smith, Tyler Smith, Samuel Connor and Briseis Nean)
The team designed a message stick to be used as an encryption activity for new Year 7 students as part of ‘transition day’. The message stick contained encoded messages, including a welcome message, the school values and Acknowledgement of Country. The message stick incorporated various systems of code, including braille, so that the artefact was inclusive and accessible for students with visual impairments.
Spirit of ATSIAP
Aviation High School (Charlee Prance, Tate Shaw, Meira Walsh and Krystal Ebsworth) and
Harristown State High School (Djinni Dalton and Hope Hinkins)
This award celebrates the team who best exhibit the virtues and values of ATSIAP –persistence and optimism.