Applications are being accepted for a $1 million state scholarship fund for students studying cybersecurity, Governor Terry McAuliffe announced Wednesday.
The Virginia Cybersecurity Public Service Scholarship Program will award $20,000 to Virginia students who study how to safeguard computer networks, data and electronic resources. In order to keep the scholarship, students must work at a Virginia state agency or institution for as many years as they receive the scholarship.
“As we work to build a new Virginia economy, we must ensure that our electronic infrastructure is secured against cyberattacks,” Governor Terry McAuliffe said. “That is why I launched ‘Meet the Threat: States Confront the Cyber Challenge’ at the National Governors Association in July. It is imperative that states promote programs to help students tackle the cybersecurity challenges of the 21st century. The Cybersecurity Public Service Scholarship Program is an excellent approach to building our cyber workforce as we continue to enhance the Commonwealth’s reputation as an international leader in cyber innovation and security.”
The governor allotted $500,000 in the 2016-2018 biennial budget for the scholarships.
About 25 scholarships will be awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis. Recipients can receive the scholarships for up to two years. In order to receive the scholarship, applicants must be a full-time student in a cybersecurity program at a Virginia nonprofit private or public college or university, be within two years of graduation from an undergraduate or graduate program and have at least a 3.0 GPA.
“The only way we can produce the kinds of students who are eager to take on the demands of the new Virginia economy is by making sure we are providing them with the skills they need,” said Secretary of Education Dietra Trent. “Expanding opportunities in cybersecurity through this scholarship program will be a key component in preparing students for rewarding and impactful careers.”
Applications for the coming school year will be accepted until September 15, 2016. For details about the scholarship program, please visit the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia’s website here.