Women's Cyber Academy

To help fill the skills gap, the SANS Institute created the SANS Cyber Academy, an intensive, accelerated training program that provides SANS world-class training and GIAC certifications to quickly and effectively launch careers in cybersecurity. SANS Cyber Academies are 100% scholarship-based, at no cost to participants. A United States Cyber Academy program.

The Application Process

Interested candidates should follow the application process below.
  • Complete a web application form.
  • Your application will be reviewed, and an online assessment sent within three days.
  • Complete the online assessment before applications close.
  • Submit supporting documents to complete your application.
  • Complete an interview questionnaire.
  • All candidates receive notification of acceptance or denial, the notification timeframe is dependent on the volume of applications.
  • The application process is competitive. You must be invited to each of the stages listed above.
  • All applicants will lose access to the online assessment when applications close.

Women's Academy Timeline

June 1 - Application Window Opens
July 1 – Application Window Closes
September 2024 – Training Begins
May 2025 – Program Completion

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Senior in college; preferably pursuing a degree in a Computer/IT-related field or technical STEM discipline.
  • College graduate OR career changers currently not working in the information security field or with prior work experience from the information security field.
  • Must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent legal resident (Green card holder) currently residing in the U.S.
  • Graduates currently pursuing or having achieved a Master's or Ph.D. in information security are not eligible to apply.
  • If you are currently working in the information security field, or with prior work experience from the information security field, including risk & compliance, auditing, security governance, security awareness, information security program/ project management, and similar, you are not eligible to apply.

Note: Transitioning military service members, active members of the reserves forces, US Coast Guard members, and military veterans are encouraged to apply to the Veterans Cyber Academy instead. Active-duty applicants must be within six months of separation.


The first course you take will be SEC275 Foundations & GFACT Certification
The second course you will take is SEC401 Security Essentials & GSEC Certification
The third and final course you will take is SEC504 Incident Handling & GCIH Certification
Application and Academy Roadmap

Step by Step Information on the Application Process

Learn more about the application process and how the academy helps launch your new cybersecurity career in less than a year.

Time Commitment for Students

The SANS Cyber Academy is a fast-track, intensive program, and students are expected the time required to complete the program will vary by student. Students are given three months to complete the training modules for each course and pass the corresponding GIAC Certification exam. Each student will complete three courses, and the the full program will take no longer than twelve months to complete.
On average, it takes most SANS students 150 hours to prepare for one GIAC certification attempt.
All courses are taken online via SANS OnDemand and are self-paced. Students are required to complete each course and certification in twelve weeks depending on the particular academy's schedule.

"Participating in the SANS Academy has been nothing short of life changing." - Xena Olsen, Cyber Threat Intel Analyst, Fortune 500 Financial Services Firm

Employer Partners

Meet, interview, and potentially hire academy graduates

Non-Profit Partners

Engage in ways ranging from funding and executing their own academy, to helping expand the impact of existing SANS programs with additional resources.