Department of Defense Cyber Scholarship Program (CySP)

University of New Haven is now accepting applications for the Department of Defense Cyber Scholarship Program (CySP) for 2023.

Cyber Scholarship logo


As one of the National Security Agency’s National Centers of Academic Excellence (CAE), the University of New Haven is able to submit your application to this national job and scholarship program. These are extremely generous scholarships that provide the following benefits:

  • Full tuition and academic fees (100%).
  • A generous yearly stipend for living expenses ($27,000 for undergraduate students and $32,000 for graduate students).
  • A one-time $1500 allowance for a new computer.
  • An allowance for books and travel to the job fair.
  • This annual scholarship can be extended up to five consecutive years. You reapply each year.
  • If you are chosen, you will have a job working for the Department of Defense if you meet the conditions.

Eligibility Criteria

University of New Haven students entering their junior year in BS in Cybersecurity & Networks, or BS in Computer Science with a Concentration in Cybersecurity. Note: Students on the Cyber Operations National Security Agency designated paths are strongly encouraged to apply. Selected junior students will be provided one year of support to continue studies for their BS degrees, and are eligible to reapply annually for up to four more years of support to complete their MS degrees in Cybersecurity and Networks.

Students from the University of New Haven students, as well as external applicants accepted into the MS degree in Cybersecurity and Networks program are also eligible for 2 years of support to complete their MS degrees in Cybersecurity and Networks.

  • Must be able to demonstrate evidence of being able to obtain a Security Clearance. Learn more from DoD here.
  • Must be a United States Citizen or US Permanent Resident.
  • Full-time student status.
  • Undergraduates must have and continue to maintain at least a 3.20 cumulative GPA (evaluated every semester). Graduate students must have and continue to maintain at least a 3.50 cumulative GPA (also evaluated every semester).
  • Completion of summer internships at the designated Department of Defense organization.
  • If accepted, the applicant commits to working for the sponsoring Department of Defense organization as a civilian for a term equal to the number of years that the scholarship was awarded.

Affiliation with the DoD Based Eligibility Rules:

  • Rising Juniors, Seniors, Masters and PhD/Doctorate students who have no involvement with the DoD or Federal Agencies
  • Active military members who will retire or end their active duty status on or before the start of the Fall semester.
  • Reserves or National Guard members (Payback is 2 for 1)

The following groups can apply directly through your employer as Retention Students:

  • All current DoD Civilians and Active Military members

Ineligible and other rules:

  • Current Federal Employees
  • No quitting a DoD / Federal job to get a scholarship


Students funded under this program incur the following obligations

  • Complete a degree program through a plan of study with a significant focus on cybersecurity.
  • Undergraduates must maintain a 3.20 cumulative GPA or higher (and remain in good standing as per university policies). Graduate students must maintain a 3.50 cumulative GPA (also evaluated every semester).
  • Participate in all CySP activities including job fairs, and other meetings.
  • Accept no external employment without written permission from the University’s CySP program.
  • Complete the assigned cybersecurity-related internship with the assigned Department of Defense organization during the summers while funded under the program.
  • Complete employment with the Department of Defense organization immediately following graduation. The length of employment must equal the duration of the scholarship. For Reserves and National Guard members, the obligation is two years of employment for each year of support.
  • Participation in the university’s cyber collegiate competitive teams.
  • Participate in high-quality applied cybersecurity research: There is a general expectation that CySP Scholars will be lead authors on approximately one article per year of support during their scholarship.

How to Apply

You must have the following ready when you start the application form (you cannot save and return later):

  • Personal Information (Name, E-mail)
  • DoD Cyber Scholarship Program New Student Application
    • Your application will be submitted in the DoD's Website for this scholarship. In addition, I will need to get to know you and your work so I can evaluate you for this program. To do that I have a website for you to submit your information to me. I will work with you on this application in early January. You should start gathering your documents and work on the OS612 Supplemental Competency Statement, this is very important.
  • Contacts for two references (cannot be family members). This should include at least one faculty member.
  • A form with your completed information to be sent to your institution to verify your disciplinary record.
  • Resume following DoD requirements (PDF only).
  • Awards, Honors and Distinctions List (PDF only).
  • Two letters of reference with an assessment of your knowledge and ability following the six (6) competency areas listed in Section F of the DoD Application form.
  • OF612 Supplemental Competency Statement
  • A three-page (max) essay with the following subsections (PDF only):
    • Career goals in cybersecurity
    • Government work of interest (and not of interest) to the candidate
    • A short statement of research (what the candidate is interested in working on – applied cybersecurity research problems that are of interest to the candidate)
    • A persuasive statement (convincing the committee that you are the right candidate to be considered for the SFS program
  • Official Transcript(s) sent directly to:
New Student Applicants:
  • Full Student Application Transcripts:
    • Paper application: Paper applications must include official transcripts. Applications arriving without official transcripts will be deemed incomplete.
    • Soft copy application: Soft-copy (electronic) applications may contain a copy of the official transcript.
  • Resume
  • 2 letters of recommendation
  • Awards/Honors list
  • Knowledge, Skills, and Attributes Statement

Additional Information

Failure to satisfy the academic requirements of the program or to complete the service requirement will result in forfeiture of the scholarship award, which will revert to a student loan with repayments pro-rated accordingly to reflect partial service completed. The institution is responsible for collecting the repayment amounts, including interest, consistent with the provisions of part B or D of Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965. All forfeited scholarship funds, less grantee costs associated with collection of the repayment not to exceed 5% of the forfeited amount, will be returned to the United States Treasury and may not be re-used by the awardee institution. Scholarship recipients in coordination with the institution and the CySP Principal Investigator may petition the Department of Defense to waive or suspend repayment of scholarships in cases of extreme hardship or other circumstances that would preclude the fulfillment of the service obligation.

Frequently Asked Questions list can be found at the CySP website.