Sponsor Deadline
Posted: 4/8/2024

CyberCorps(R) Scholarship for Service (SFS): Defending America's Cyberspace

Cyberspace has transformed the daily lives of people. Society's overwhelming reliance on cyberspace, however, has exposed the system's fragility and vulnerabilities: corporations, agencies, national infrastructure, and individuals continue to suffer cyber-attacks. Achieving a truly secure cyberspace requires addressing both challenging scientific and engineering problems involving many components of a system, and vulnerabilities that stem from human behaviors and choices. Examining the fundamentals of security and privacy as a multidisciplinary subject can lead to fundamentally new ways to design, build, and operate cyber systems, protect existing infrastructure, and motivate individuals to learn about cybersecurity. The Cybersecurity Enhancement Act of 2014, as amended by the National Defense Authorization Acts for 2018 and 2021, and the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022, authorizes the National Science Foundation (NSF), in coordination with the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), to offer a scholarship program to recruit and train the next generation of cybersecurity professionals to meet the needs of the cybersecurity mission of federal, state, local, and tribal governments. The goals of the CyberCorps® Scholarship for Service (SFS) program are aligned with the U.S. strategy to develop a superior cybersecurity workforce. The program goals are to: (1) increase the number of qualified and diverse cybersecurity candidates for government cybersecurity positions; (2) improve the national capacity for the education of cybersecurity professionals and research and development workforce; (3) hire, monitor, and retain high-quality CyberCorps® graduates in the cybersecurity mission of the Federal Government; and (4) strengthen partnerships between institutions of higher education and federal, state, local, and tribal governments. While all three agencies work together on all four goals, NSF’s strength is in the first two goals; OPM’s in goal (3); and DHS in goal (4).

The SFS Program welcomes proposals to establish or to continue scholarship programs in cybersecurity. A proposing institution must provide clearly documented evidence of a strong existing academic program in cybersecurity. In addition to information provided in the proposal narrative, such evidence can include ABET accreditation in cybersecurity; a designation by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security as a Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CDE), in Cyber Operations (CAE-CO) or in Research (CAE-R); or equivalent evidence documenting a strong program in cybersecurity.

Service Obligation: All scholarship recipients must work after graduation in the cybersecurity mission of a federal, state, local, or tribal government organization, or certain other qualifying entities, for a period equal to at least the length of the scholarship.

The SFS Program also supports efforts leading to an increase in the ability of the United States higher education enterprise to produce cybersecurity professionals. Funding opportunities in this area are provided via the Secure and Trustworthy Cyberspace - Education Designation (SaTC-EDU) and other programs (see the section "Increasing National Capacity in Cybersecurity Education" for more details.)

Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization: 1.  Interested applicants from within Duke should contact fundopps@duke.edu as early as possible.

 

Full Proposal Deadline Date: July 15, 2024

Eligibility Requirements

Proposals may only be submitted by the following:

  • Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) accredited in, and having a campus located in the US, acting on behalf of their faculty members. Community colleges are eligible only as sub-awardees of the partnering four-year SFS institutions as described in the Program Description section.

As of the submission deadline, PIs, co-PIs, or other senior project personnel must hold primary, full-time, paid appointments in research or teaching positions at US-based campuses of institutions eligible to submit to this solicitation (see above), with exceptions granted for family or medical leave, as determined by the submitting institution.

Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization: 1

Each performing organization is limited to one (1) proposal per annual SFS competition. Institutions with an active SFS scholarship project must wait at least (a) until they are within 24 months from the current SFS award’s end date, and (b) until they have used at least 70 percent of their budget, before submitting another SFS proposal.

Potential PIs are advised to contact their institutional office of research regarding processes used to select proposals for submission.

Limit on Number of Proposals per PI or co-PI: 1

An individual must not participate as PI, Co-PI, or Senior Personnel on more than one (1) proposal submitted to the same deadline.

Amount Description

Estimated Number of Awards: 12 to 16

 

Anticipated Funding Amount: $20,000,000

The estimated number of awards and the anticipated funding amount listed above are for new awards in FY 2024. The number of awards and funding level in future years are anticipated to be similar to FY 2024. Funding amounts and the number of awards subject to the availability of funds.