DoD Cyber Scholarship Program

DoD Cyber Scholarship Program

The Department of Defense (DoD) Cyber Scholarship Program (CySP) awards full scholarships to rising junior and senior undergraduate and graduate/doctoral students pursuing degrees in cybersecurity at institutions designated as National Centers of Academic Excellence for Cybersecurity.

The Department of Defense is offering full-ride scholarships to rising junior and senior undergraduate and graduate/doctoral students to study cyber. These awards cover tuition costs, books (which must come from an institution/degree specific required book list rather than optional books for class), required fees, one-time laptop/computer purchase cost as well as room and board.


This scholarship program promotes education, recruitment and retention of talented cybersecurity students while giving them hands-on experience through paid summer internships with DoD government organizations – in addition to giving the option for repaying their scholarship through military service after graduation.

DoD CySP Scholarship provides tuition, book allowance and living stipend to cover room and board costs for its awardees, along with professional expenses like travel to their school of study, conferences, research materials/supplies/laptop, books / personal development resources as well as providing an internship stipend to cover paid internship costs.

Students applying for a DoD Cyber Scholarship must submit an application package which includes their university sponsor signoff, transcript, resume, essay response and two letters of recommendation. Applications can be completed online via the DoD website by February each year.

As soon as an application package is submitted to the Department of Defense CySP program office, once approved it will be passed along to students as notification that they will begin receiving scholarship funds the following fall semester.

To qualify for a DoD Cyber Scholarship, students must be citizens of the United States enrolled as full-time undergraduate or graduate students at an NCAE-C accredited school and majoring in computer science, computer engineering, IT or another field with cybersecurity functions as a concentration. Furthermore, these individuals must not currently have an obligation to fulfill with either DoD/government service obligations.


The Department of Defense is offering full scholarships to rising junior and senior undergraduate students as well as graduate (Master’s or PhD) students enrolled in cybersecurity studies, part of its commitment to support higher education as a means of training a cyber workforce that can protect its information systems and networks against threats from within and without.

DoD CySP is a joint program between universities certified as National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cybersecurity and the DoD. Scholarship benefits include tuition, stipends and book allowance. Furthermore, paid summer internship opportunities may also be provided. Applications should be submitted no later than February each year to secure consideration; university sponsors must sign off, resumes submitted, transcripts processed, essay responses written and two letters of reference submitted; each NCAE-C school also has an on-campus contact who can answer any additional queries related to eligibility requirements or deadlines.

DoD CySP scholars who graduate are eligible to be employed by component and agency positions within the Department of Defense; their service obligation equals the number of semesters for which they received the scholarship. Furthermore, DoD requires its CySP scholars to complete paid internships during breaks in their academic studies.

Cyber Scholarships provide students with valuable hands-on cybersecurity internship experience during academic breaks, giving them a leg up toward careers in cybersecurity. Selected for one must be able to secure security clearance necessary for employment with DoD agencies upon graduation.

DoD Cyber Scholarship Program applications for 2023 have now closed, but will re-open next year. If you are interested in applying, be sure to regularly visit their website for updates and make note that applicants from other schools in NCAE-C network can also compete for scholarships alongside students on their campus.

Security Clearances

DoD Cyber Scholarship Program provides an outstanding opportunity for students interested in cybersecurity to gain hands-on experience in this area. With scholarships, internships and guaranteed jobs offered for graduates who complete their degrees successfully. However, some stipulations must be adhered to before entering; students must pass a background check and possess no criminal or drug records as well as attain security clearance; this may make entry more challenging for some applicants.

The DoD Cyber Scholarship Program (CySP) is a graduate and undergraduate scholarship program created to encourage recruitment of new talent into DoD cyber workforce and strengthen national capabilities to defend against threats to information systems and networks. Congress and DoD both recognize higher education as essential in developing cyber skills to meet current and emerging threats to national security.

Students enrolled at universities designated National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cybersecurity (NCAE-C) can apply for the CySP. This scholarship program covers tuition, stipend, book allowance, travel support to conferences and travel support for paid internships as well as providing one year employment service commitments upon graduation.

Scholarships provide academic year stipends of $27,000 for undergraduate students and $32,000 for graduate (Master’s and Ph.D) students, tuition (excluding mandatory fees), books and laptop purchase, health insurance coverage, travel stipend for conference travel as well as room and board. Cyber Scholars must sign a written agreement agreeing to work for DoD civilian employment for one year for every year of scholarship assistance they received.

Scholarship applications will open for submission on November 1st 2023 – it is important that students apply early. A local review process must take place prior to submission to DoD; their selection board will score candidates and select scholars for 2023-2024 scholarship cycle. Scholarship applications can be submitted up until that time, though early applications are encouraged as deadlines will apply.

Real-World Application

The DOD Cyber Scholarship Program aims to attract and retain top talent in cyber defense, sponsored by the DOD Chief Information Officer and administered by the National Security Agency. It offers tuition assistance, stipend/book allowance payments and paid summer internship opportunities at universities identified as National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense by both organizations.

Students wishing to apply must create an account and fill out an online application, providing university sponsor signoff, transcripts, resume, essay response and two letters of recommendation as part of their scholarship package. Upon acceptance into the program they must pass both a background check and security clearance process.

UNG has experienced success with the Department of Defense Cyber Scholarship program. In 2019-20, three recipients – one junior and two seniors – from this scholarship were recognized; this exceeded the average per school of 1.4 recipients. Assistant Professor of Cybersecurity Tamirat Abegaz believes UNG’s success helps other students see they too can compete for such opportunities.

Scholarships provide an ideal way for students to gain valuable field experience and advance their careers, especially those interested in working on national-level threats mitigation. Furthermore, this program gives graduates an opportunity to fulfill a service obligation after graduation.

Sam is an experienced information security specialist who works with enterprises to mature and improve their enterprise security programs. Previously, he worked as a security news reporter.