DoD Cyber Scholarship Program

DoD CySP Retention Scholarships

The DoD CySP supports DoD civilians, military officers, and enlisted personnel who pursue Master’s and Doctoral degrees in cyber-related fields of study. Typically, these retention students attend a DoD school designated as a NCAE-C and, depending on the program, may finish their graduate degree at a partnering university. For DoD civilian and military personnel, the service commitment following graduation is determined by their sponsoring component organization. Retention student also have an opportunity to pursue a two-year community college degree or certificate.



  • Components: Any DoD Agency, Organization, or Command
  • Component Office of Primary Responsibility (OPR): Office within the Component that will represent that component to the DoD CySP Program Office.  The OPR will advertise the program within the Component.
  • Applicant: DoD civilian or active-duty military member.
  • Application Package: Completed package that provides all the information and documents outlined in the Retention Program Applicant Checklist (See Attachment A – Applicant Checklist).  The applicant will provide this package to the OPR.
  • Nomination Package: A complete nomination package must prioritize the applicants in order of the Component’s priorities. Only one nomination package is required. The Component must include all applications in rank order.


  • Active-duty military members
    • Traditional Reservists and National Guard members are not eligible for this program. They may apply to the DoD CySP Recruitment Program.
    • Traditional Reservist and National Guard members who are in an active-duty status may apply as long as they are eligible to attend an education program while on active-duty.
  • Permanent DoD civilian employees who have completed any required probationary time.
    • Temporary, conditional, or employees on performance improvement plans are not eligible to apply for the DoD CySP.
  • Currently not performing a period of obligated service for any programs.
  • Nominated by their Component.
    • Components shall only nominate employees who are high performing military members/civilians rated at the upper (e.g.; above satisfactory) levels of the applicable performance appraisal system and who demonstrate sustained quality performance with the potential of increased responsibilities.
    • Components shall also confirm that participating in an education program will not negatively affect any service or job duty requirements (e.g.; Rated Officers, special pay band/Military Occupational Specialty code/Occupational Series.)
  • Meets all requirements for acceptance to the specific institution they plan to attend.
    • All eligibility criteria, especially academic credentials, should be carefully reviewed as DoD CySP requirements may be more stringent than general academic enrollment criteria for a particular academic institution. No waivers will be granted.


No quotas have been identified.  The actual number of scholarships available will be contingent on the total number of eligible applicants and available funding. Component OPRs are responsible for administering the nomination process for their organization.  The Component OPR shall ensure all applicants fulfill the specific academic and personnel development requirements.  The Component OPR is responsible for submitting the nomination package which includes a rank order of all application packages to the DoD CySP Executive Administrator.  The nomination package must prioritize the applicants in order of the Component’s priorities. Only one nomination package is required.  Rank separately applicants for the available degree programs/paths as identified below within the nomination package.


Cost of tuition, required fees, and required books will be covered by the DoD CySP.  Selected applicants will continue to receive their military pay or civilian salary from the Component throughout their course of study.  Components are responsible for travel/PCS costs to and from the academic institution and any necessary position back-fill for selected applicants.  The DoD CySP will fund any short-term, degree specific on-campus activities (cohort requirements or short-term TDYs).  Academic institutions will identify any degree specific on-campus activities that require travel.  It is highly recommended that prospective applicants meet with their Component OPR to discuss all program costs.  This meeting should provide a full understanding of what is expected during their education experience and upon completion of the academic degree.

The DoD CySP is funded annually.  All participation is contingent upon available funding.


What are the available degree programs and academic start dates?

If I am selected, what are my post-academic service obligations?

Any additional questions? Email