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Excelsior Cyber Security Scholarship

1 winner$500
Application Deadline
Nov 1, 2024
Winners Announced
Dec 1, 2024
Education Level
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Field of Study:
Non-traditional students
Education Level:
Undergraduate or trade school student

The field of cybersecurity is constantly evolving, and threats are becoming more sophisticated every day. As our reliance on technology and automation grows, so does the need for skilled professionals who can protect our infrastructure from malicious attacks. As such, stagnation is not an option. Our strongest defense against emerging cyber threats is adaptable individuals who are dedicated to continuously moving to the next level.

The mission of the Excelsior Cyber Security Scholarship is to nurture talented individuals who are not only passionate about what they can bring to cybersecurity, but who are also constantly pursuing higher levels of knowledge expertise.

Any undergraduate or trade school student who is pursuing a degree in cybersecurity may apply for this scholarship, but non-traditional and veteran applicants are preferred.

To apply, tell us about yourself and why you are pursuing cybersecurity. Please discuss some of the ways you are working to improve yourself or your community. If you are a non-traditional student or veteran, be sure to mention this.

Selection Criteria:
Ambition, Drive, Resilience
Published July 15, 2024
Essay Topic

Please tell us about yourself and why you are pursuing cybersecurity. Please discuss some of the ways you are working to improve yourself or your community. If you are a non-traditional student or veteran, be sure to mention this.

400–600 words

Winning Application

Sara Dowty
Eastern Oregon UniversityWarm Springs, OR
The field of technology is massive and growing every day while the Warm Springs reservation remains left behind slowly catching up with the rest of society. My goal is the help the Warm Springs tribal reservation improve their skills in the field of technology. I currently work for a non-profit community organization called the Warm Springs Community Action Team as the Technology Workforce Analyst. In my current role, I am the project manager for recruiting Warm Springs tribal members into the field of technology. One of my roles is to obtain training, internships, apprenticeships, and entry-level jobs for the community of Warm Springs, OR. A little bit about Warm Springs, it is a small federally recognized tribe with about 3,800+ enrolled tribal members. About 97% of the population is low-income and living in the 98th poverty percentile. About 28% of tribal members have access to the internet, however, more each day are obtaining access to the internet. My goal is to obtain my degree first, while also continuing my recruitment and encouraging others into the field of technology. Recently, I obtained 500 scholarships for the Grow with Google program for the community of Warm Springs. I am now recruiting participants to continue learning in this program. I am currently enrolled in the IT support professional career certificate program and I am on week 5. I am currently reaching out to local companies to hire entry-level graduates for the program. My goal is to completely change the income average by having local tribal members obtain remote entry-level positions while still living in Warm Springs. Obtaining my degree gives me the opportunity to become the role of a mentor for those who plan to further their education here. I am currently a mentor for 2 students who are seeking their IT support professional career certificate. Recently, I had to explain to a student in a different way for them to understand binary code. While attending college and learning about binary code, I didn't understand it, it is hard. I researched on Youtube other training to learn it. I still couldn't learn it. However, while taking the Grow with Google (GWG) IT support course, it was so much easier to learn and understand. I now understand binary code in a way that made sense to me. The training program is very thorough and describes things in a way for normal individuals to understand. I hope to continue to be a role model for other Warm Springs tribal members who are pursuing a career in IT and computer science. I recently attended the ISC2 training for Cyber Security. I graduated from the training 7/17/2023. I plan to be earning my ISC2 cyber security certificate within the month. I plan on using my newly found skills to help my non-profit organization with future cyber security. I plan to help be a mentor and resource for future GWG cyber security trainees. I am a Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs tribal enrolled member. I am the first in my family to seek to obtain a Bachelor's degree education level. I am a woman with 3 children and from a low-income family. Our family qualifies for Medicaid and low-income assistance for some programs such as the ACP federal program. My family struggles to keep up with bills as we live pay check to pay check.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is Nov 1, 2024. Winners will be announced on Dec 1, 2024.