If you’re reading this blog, you’ve either heard of or had the pleasure of participating in the National Cyber League (NCL) Games. NCL is more fun with friends, and often, those friends are at the same school as you. If you’ve gotten this far in the blog, you must be the only person at your school and you’re looking for ideas and assistance on ways to bring the Games to your school.
First, there is truly no wrong way to promote interest and pitch the NCL Games to your friends (except for blackmail, the Player Ambassadors DO NOT endorse blackmailing your friends into participating). As a lone person participating in the NCL competition, you have many tools to aid you in raising interest and passion for the Games. Below, I have listed quite a few suggestions. If you either find or have already used a different means of increasing participation, please let me know!
Talk to your friends
If you have already played in the Games, give them a 30 to 60 second elevator pitch that includes: what the Games are, why you enjoy them, and what you think they will get out of them (And be sure to mention the fun you had!). For college and university friends, remind them that for $35, they’ll have a great LinkedIn/resume boost for participating in the Games, as well as the Scouting Report which is great supplemental material to send along with a resume/cover letter.
If you have never played, welcome to the NCL Games! They are great fun and do not require friends, but it is a great bonding/teamwork exercise activity. Utilize the NCL Coaching Guide to show your friends selected previous challenges to get an idea of the types of questions the Games will contain. The coaching guide and any of our summer camp challenges on the site are great practice before the Gym opens as well, use them to your advantage.
Social media posts never hurt as well, posting about your enjoyment of an educational activity may seem nerdy, but remember, to many people unfamiliar, this is all considered hacking, which is super cool and edgy so this automagically becomes 84d455. Just remember to never post the challenges during the Games or ask friends who are not participating for help (nobody at all during the Individual Game).
Talking to Your School
If your goal is to pitch the NCL as a school sponsored event, many of the official details you may be looking for can be found in the list below. If you’re unsure of a specific that your school may be asking for, check the NCL FAQ page, and if you you still can’t find your the answer to your question, feel free to reach out on Slack via the Ask-an-Ambassador channel or DM me on Twitter.
- What is NCL? Click here for a great summary!
- Who is involved? Me (the student), hopefully a few friends, a professor.
- What is the cost? $35(n) where n is the number of students
- What does the cost permit? Three games in one! Find out more here.
- Why does this benefit students at the school? Scouting Reports, great resume booster for those in the major, or if the school doesn’t have the major, this is a great boost to the education you are receiving in your intended field.
Talking to a PTA
Why would I need to do this? If you are in high school, parents carry power where schools don’t want to divert funds/resources/time for an additional extracurricular. Speak to someone who you trust to bring this to the PTA, or whatever your school’s equivalent is if they have one, and utilize the list above for talking to the school. Talk to your friends and their parents as well, the more people interested, the louder your PTA can be in fighting for you.
When all else fails… Food.
I have been known to promise food/snacks for joining NCL and participating in the Team Game, if you have the school funds to do it, or your own personal funds to buy a pizza or two in exchange for their time, it never hurts to try! My second season of NCL, I was willing to pay for quite a few pizzas for the team as long as they were willing to sign up, participate, and give it a go. If you’re around the Midwest/Northeast, Domino’s sells $5.99 medium, one-topping pizzas, so even a broke college student like me could afford them 😀
As always, if you need additional ideas, or help from the Ambassador team for weight, we’re here to help, feel free to reach out in Slack or @mistressVen0m on Twitter, I will help wherever I can.