Each year, a group of Information Technology students are competitively selected to participate in the scholarship program based upon factors that indicate their potential for success in placement in a government job.
Factors for selection include:
- Ability to attain a Top Secret government clearance (see the 'clearances' section.)
- Education, work, and life experiences that increase the value of the applicant to potential federal employers.
- Willingness to participate in a federal internship in the summer following acceptance into the program.
- Willingness to attend a Summer symposium with other Cybercorps students and regular meetings during the Fall and Spring Semesters.
- Ability and willingness to work for the federal government upon graduation for a period of time at least as long as the student was supported by the program.
- Drive to seek federal employment and internships proactively while participating in the program.
The typical job series, and the one for which the OPM has issued "direct hire authority", is the 2210 series. The federal government is required to advertise positions (those that are not 'excepted') and receive applications from a number of candidates before hiring a candidate. This is to ensure equity in candidate consideration (i.e. that someone doesn't hire their friend without even looking at the resumes of other qualified candidates.) The direct hire authority adds flexibility in hiring for positions for which a critical need has been determined. Right now, IT positions in the 2210 series are considered critical need. There is also a pay differential for these positions, the amount of which varies depending upon which grade that a candidate is hired at. These factors work in the favor of applicants and make this program an excellent opportunity for applicants who are interested in pursuing a career with the federal government.
There are currently 19 participating institutions, including...
- Carnegie Mellon
- Florida State
- Georgia Tech
- Idaho State
- U Idaho
- Iowa State
- Jackson State
- Johns Hopkins
- Mississippi State
- Naval Postgrad
- U Nebraska
- New Mexico
- Norwich U
- Polytechnic U
- U Tulsa
- UNC Charlotte