The Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) provides opportunities for primary, secondary and tertiary students to extend their knowledge and skills in ICT and cyber security, and more broadly science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
Primary and high school student opportunities
Girls' Programming Network
Are you a girl interested in computers and technology? Would you like to meet other girls with similar interests to you? Then the Girls' Programming Network (GPN) might be for you.
The GPN is an extra-curricular program run by girls for girls, to inspire and support girls interested in computers and technology, and is designed for Year 4–12 girls of all programming abilities. You will be encouraged by dedicated female tutors from university, industry and government who specialise in software development and cyber security.
The Canberra GPN is delivered in partnership with the University of Sydney's National Computer Science School and Data 61, and the support of exceptional volunteers.
In support of the National Computer Science School (NCSS) Summer School, ASD has developed an ICT Masterclass focused on cyber security. You can take this class as part of the NCSS Summer School or through your high school IT teacher can request that we bring the program to you.
You will be exposed to a range of cyber security challenges to develop your interest, skills and knowledge in cyber security. This program is aimed at Year 11–12 IT students.
Maths Appreciation Days
Do you enjoy the challenge of solving problems? Are you thinking about a career in maths? ASD, in partnership with the Defence Science and Technology Group, conduct Maths Appreciation Days to inspire Year 10–12 students into further studies in maths.
The day consists of a number of challenges that require you to apply your maths skills to unique and unusual problems. The day also provides you with the opportunity to discuss careers in maths with seasoned professionals and the pathway through high school and university that you could follow to achieve one of these careers.
ASD offers work experience placements for Year 10–12 students at the Australian Cyber Security Centre. The program is focused on students who are considering further studies in a STEM-related field.
The week-long scenario-based program offers you an opportunity to extend your knowledge and skills through challenges ranging from:
- identifying security intrusions on a computer system
- learning how to identify email compromises
- learning to monitor network traffic to detect exploits
- learning how to conduct forensic examinations of hard drives
- learning about web application vulnerabilities
- learning modern encryption methods
- learning about different types of encryption and how they are used to protect data
- using open-source software to recover keys and encrypt and decrypt data
- learning about geospatial analysis and how to use geospatial tools for imagery analysis
- engineering hardware and software solutions for security problems
- robotics programming using Arduinos
- construction of Arduino electrical circuits.
You are mentored by experienced ICT professionals working in the industry who have a high level of expertise in their field.
Students with an aptitude for discovering how technology works rather than the use of technology will be considered favourably.
All placements are in Canberra. Students from interstate are welcome to participate but are responsible for their own travel and accommodation.
ASD participates in the Australian Government Digital Apprenticeship Program.
As an apprentice at ASD, your work will be varied and directly support Australia’s national security. You will be provided mentorship from an ICT technical expert for the duration of your apprenticeship. By the end of the program you will be part of a great team delivering critical ICT support to ASD’s mission.
This program is for students who are currently completing their Year 12 Certificate, or people with a passion for ICT who are looking for a new and exciting career change.
You will work the equivalent of four days per week with the remainder of your time dedicated to completing a Certificate IV (two years) or a Diploma (three years). You will be paid for your studies as well as your work under a competitive remuneration package.
In addition to Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT) studies, ASD apprentices undertake an extensive training package where you can obtain nationally-recognised ICT training qualifications.
Defence Civilian Undergraduate Sponsorship for Year 12 students
Thinking of studying computer science and cyber security at university?
ASD sponsors Defence Civilian Undergraduate Sponsorship program students in computer science and cyber security at the University of NSW, Canberra, at the Australian Defence Force Academy. This sponsorship will provide a financial contribution towards your studies and exposure to ASD through work placements.
This program is aimed at Year 12 students moving into university studies.
Tertiary student opportunities
ASD participates in the Australian Government Digital Cadetship Program. Cadets at ASD are able to work on a wide range of projects, directly contributing to Australia’s national security.
You will have the opportunity to undertake a wide range of training to further improve your skills, and get the real-world experience that isn’t taught at university. The program is for current university students who are undertaking an undergraduate degree in ICT.
The program requires cadets to work a minimum of two days a week and allows for a flexible work-study life.
Email ASD Digital Cadetship Program.
Are you interested in furthering your knowledge of cyber security, information security or cryptography while gaining valuable workplace experience?
The Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) sponsors an Internship Program for tertiary students studying ICT, cyber or information security, engineering, mathematics or other STEM fields.
You are provided with the opportunity to complete a supervised project based on ASD’s operational needs, such as malware analysis, vulnerability research or penetration testing. Internships are undertaken during university summer holidays.
Internships are project-based, relating to current programs or future initiatives such as:
- researching, developing, designing or testing tools or programs for cyber security analysis, development and exploitation
- software vulnerability analysis and auditing, including code analysis, static analysis, fuzzing, reverse engineering and vulnerability research
- contributing to, reviewing and testing current and new information security policies, eg, develop guidance on integrating security into a container-based DevOps software development approach (SecDevOps)
- investigating new directions in cryptography
- performing malware analysis, including static and dynamic binary code review, and web shell analysis.
Students will be engaged on a full-time non-ongoing short-term contract for 3 months at an APS 2-level salary (PDF) during university summer holidays.
The Internship Program is run from the Australian Cyber Security Centre.
Eligibility and selection criteria
To apply for an internship you must meet ALL the following eligibility and application criteria:
- be a full-time tertiary student who will be continuing full-time tertiary studies in the forthcoming year
- be studying ICT, cyber or information security, engineering, mathematics or other STEM fields
- have completed two years of tertiary study before commencing the Internship Program
- obtain a recommendation and endorsement from their course convener
- be an Australian citizen
- successfully obtain a Defence BASELINE security clearance
- Describe a technical project or challenge you have undertaken that demonstrates your technical ability, research skills and critical thinking (up to 400 words).
- Provide details about relevant experience acquired through course-related industry placements, other relevant industry experience or self-initiated development (up to 250 words).
- Describe the contribution that your engagement in this program could make and the expectations you have in the program (up to 250 words)
- Provide a current academic transcript and curriculum vitae
- Applications for the 2017–18 Internship Program were open in June–July 2017.