Workforce Skills and Smarts to Capture Spotlight at CORTEX Olympics at SCTE•ISBE Cable-Tec Expo

SEPT. 26, 2017 (Exton, PA)—Cable telecommunications’ two biggest workforce skills competitions —the International Cable-Tec Games and the IP Challenge—will be colocated for the first time when the Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE) and its global arm, the International Society of Broadband Experts (ISBE), present the CORTEX Olympics @ Expo Evening as part of SCTE•ISBE Cable-Tec Expo® 2017 on Thursday, Oct. 19.

The CORTEX Olympics will bring together the industry’s best practitioners in two key areas—the field engineering skills that are required to provide today’s broadband services, as well as the IP expertise that will pave the way for the services that are driving future revenue for cable system operators. Both skills events will be conducted in the exhibit hall of the Colorado Convention Center, in Denver, with Cable-Tec Games beginning at 4:30 p.m. and the IP Challenge getting underway at 5 p.m.  Vericom Global Solutions is the sponsor of Expo Evening.

The International Cable-Tec Games, sponsored by Greenlee Communications, feature the winners of local chapter events competing with their peers for international gold, silver, and bronze awards in such categories as Cable Splicing, Meter Reading, and Fiber Splicing, as well as Metallic (MTDR) and Optical (OTDR) Time Domain Reflectometer. The IP Challenge will be conducted on the Innovation Theater stage and will test knowledge of Internet Protocol technologies and IPv6 among finalists from preliminary competitions.

Sponsored once again by Cisco, the IP Challenge will feature an expanded list of finalists competing against one another, including Cable ONE’s Alexander Morong, the 2016 champion. The final will include four rounds of “Jeopardy”-style questions and one practical round of equipment configuration and troubleshooting.  Finalists include: Jeremy Schmeichel of Vast Broadband; Jamie Griffin of Full Channel; Viktar Bialou of Comcast; James Guidry and John Holt of Charter; and Cody Hall, Robert Peiers, Fernando Ramos Barraza, Kevin Troub, Larry Urueta, Douglas Van Gessel and John Wiser of Cable ONE.

Each of the finalists receives a full conference pass for SCTE•ISBE Cable-Tec Expo® 2017.  The IP Challenge winner will receive one full conference pass to Cisco Live and one full conference pass to SCTE•ISBE Cable-Tec Expo® 2018, at which he will attempt to defend his IP Challenge title.

The industry’s leading conference and exposition, SCTE•ISBE Cable-Tec Expo®will be conducted Tuesday, Oct. 17 through Friday, Oct. 20 at the Colorado Convention Center.  The Opening General Session features a star-studded lineup of industry speakers, including keynote remarks by Mike Fries, CEO of Liberty Global, and Tom Rutledge, Chairman and CEO of Charter Communications, and a panel discussion on operations featuring three highly regarded executives—Debi Picciolo, senior vice president of operations, West Region for Charter Communications; Ed Marchetti, senior vice president of operations for Comcast’s Northeast Division; and Patricia Martin, vice president, service assurance for Cox—moderated by Leslie Ellis, president of Ellis Edits and Multichannel News technology columnist.

Expo Week begins on Monday, Oct. 16 with a One Day Immersion program at The Cable Center; the event is supported by the Emma Bowen Foundation and is designed to stimulate career opportunities for college students, recent graduates, and graduate-level candidates. On Tuesday, Oct. 17, the agenda will feature the start of almost four-dozen technical workshops and a technology-rich seminar on Remote PHY that is free to all paid Full Conference attendees, as well as the Cable TV Pioneers Annual Banquet and Class of 2017 induction ceremonies.

Other highlights of Cable-Tec Expo 2017 include an ongoing series of thought-leadership presentations at the Innovation Theater in the heart of the exhibit hall and an International Experience underscoring Expo’s growing importance within the global cable community. Terry Cordova, vice chairman, business development–network and technology services for Altice USA, and Jim Blackley, executive vice president, engineering and information technology for Charter Communications, are program co-chairs for Expo 2017.

SCTE•ISBE Cable-Tec Expo® is renowned as the pre-eminent venue that combines the thought leadership, engineering innovation, and deal-making that power the technological future of broadband telecommunications.  As a nexus for content and service providers, technology partners, and industry experts, Cable-Tec Expo provides rich insights into technologies, products, and services that can generate revenue, streamline operations, and increase customer satisfaction. In addition to learned presentations and technology-centric exhibits, Cable-Tec Expo features valuable learning, peer-to-peer interaction, and networking opportunities that are designed to prepare the technology workforce for the advent of future products and services. Registration and additional information on registration options are available at