Cyber Scholars Program

About the Program

The goal of the UMBC Cyber Scholars Program is to prepare the next generation of cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, and data science professionals in an increasingly digital age, with a focus on increasing the participation and success of women and other underrepresented groups in this fast-growing field.

The UMBC Cyber Scholars Program is directed by the UMBC Center for Cybersecurity and run in partnership with UMBC’s Center for Women in Technology (CWIT). The program was started through a generous $1 million grant from the Northrop Grumman Foundation

The program began in Fall 2013 with a goal to support 15 to 20 scholars annually. Scholars are supported financially and incorporated into a scholarship community that includes special on-campus housing, unique courses, mentoring, and the chance to take part in cybersecurity research and internships early in their academic careers.

UMBC Cyber Scholars are awarded $5,000- $15,000 per year.

The scholarship is more than a financial award; it is a program that fosters a community through common on-campus living-learning housing for freshman Scholars, events, and activities. Cyber Scholars will learn from and support one another throughout their college careers, and from core interaction with UMBC faculty and mentors.

As freshmen, Cyber Scholars will take a special introductory seminar. Students will also complete a track or certificate within their major related to cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, or data science. 

Internships & Research
During their time in the program, Cyber Scholars will take part in at least one targeted cybersecurity, AI, or data science-related internship at a company or government organization. Students may also choose to participate in faculty-led research labs at UMBC or other institutions.

Every Cyber Scholar is also assigned a peer mentor, faculty mentor, and industry mentor during their time in the program and will meet one-on-one monthly with the Assistant Director of the program to stay on track with classes, job searches, and other areas.

Who Should Apply

  • Incoming UMBC freshmen
  • Current UMBC undergraduate students
  • Transfer students from other colleges

Students of all genders who want to pursue careers in cybersecurity, AI, and/or data science are encouraged to apply. Applicants must have at least a 3.25 G.P.A.

How to Apply

Applicants must submit the following materials. Incoming students must apply to UMBC first and use the assigned campus ID number to access the application in Scholarship Retriever.

  • Cyber Application (submitted via Scholarship Retriever)
  • Two Letters of Recommendation (optional; submitted via Scholarship Retriever)

When to Apply

  • Incoming freshman deadline: January 1
  • Incoming transfer and continuing UMBC student deadline: March 1

Be A Cyber Associate

The UMBC Cyber Associates Program is an opportunity for new freshmen majoring in Computer Engineering, Computer Science, and Information Systems who have an interest in the field of cybersecurity to connect with a community of students with similar interests and to further their knowledge and preparation for a future career.  An important part of our mission is to increase the participation of women and other underrepresented groups in the field of cybersecurity.

Students selected as Cyber Associates will:

  • Live on the CWIT (Center for Women in Technology) Living-Learning Community floor in Chesapeake Hall.
  • Take the First Year Experience class in the fall semester for CWIT and Cyber Affiliates and Associates to help with a successful transition from high school to college.
  • Take the Cyber Practicum class with other Cyber Scholars & Associates during the fall and spring semesters during  school year.
  • Meet once per month with the Assistant Director, Cyber Scholars Program, for help with academic advising, professional development, etc.
  • Participate in other cyber-related events and meetings (to be announced at the beginning of each semester).

Students must also apply for university housing by this date and fill out the supplemental application for the CWIT Living-Learning Community.

Be A Cyber Affiliate

Students who are not in the Cyber Scholars Program, but are majoring in Computer Engineering, Computer Science, or Information Systems and have an interest in cybersecurity, are encouraged to register as Cyber Affiliates.

Questions about the Cyber Scholars Program?  Contact Cindy Greenwood, Assistant Director, at or (410) 455-3881.