The VetSuccess Academy is part of the SANS CyberTalent Immersion Academy program, an intensive, accelerated training program that provides SANS world-class training and GIAC certifications to quickly and effectively launch careers in cybersecurity. SANS Immersion Academies are 100% scholarship-based and no cost to participants. A United States Cyber Academy Program

How The Program Works

Candidates meeting the academy requirements may submit an application and proceed to complete an online assessment. Based on the results, applicants may be invited to submit additional documentation to complete their application and may advance to the next step for a personal interview. The admissions team will evaluate applicants based on their application, and will notify all candidates of their admission or denial.

All candidates selected to participate in a VetSuccess Academy will begin by taking the SEC401 course online via the SANS OnDemand platform. The SEC401 course and its corresponding GSEC certification exam must be completed within eight weeks. Students who successfully pass the certification exam move on to SEC504 via SANS OnDemand and will have eight weeks to complete the OnDemand course and GCIH certification exam. Students who choose to pursue a third course and certification will have eight weeks to complete the OnDemand course and successfully pass the certification attempt.

All students are expected to complete the program in less than six months. Upon successfully completing the program, graduates will have taken up to three of the SANS courses and GIAC certifications below.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Transitioning service members within six months of separation (ETS) or no more than 10 years since separation.
  • Active duty spouses not working in the information security field or with prior work experience in the information security field.
  • Must be A U.S. citizen or Permanent Legal Resident (Green card holder).
  • Not currently working in information security or with prior work experience in an information security position outside of the military.

Time Commitment for Students

The Academy is a fast-track, intensive program, and students are expected to complete all coursework and certifications in four to six months depending on the academy schedule. On average, it takes most SANS students 100 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 eight weeks, depending on the particular academy's schedule. The VetSuccess Academies generally takes four to six months to complete.

Ready to Get Started?

If you are excited about this program and meet the basic requirements above, we invite you to review our Current Academies page to see which Academies are of interest. Please review the qualifications for each Academy as there may be different or advanced requirements for each.

If you have questions, please contact us at immersionacademy@sans.org.


The SANS VetSuccess Academy trains veterans on hyper-current hacking techniques. When it came time to perform 'in-real-life' at VDA, I felt prepared and could provide instantaneous value to the company." – Gregory Hatcher, Information Security Consultant, VDA Labs