Press Release

CISA Awards $3M in Funding for Cyber Education and Training of Next-Gen Cyber Leaders


WASHINGTON – The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) has awarded two non-profits $1.5 million each in funding through the Cyber Workforce Development and Training for Underserved Communities program. The awardees of the funding are South Memphis Renewal Community Development Corporation and Per Scholas.

This funding opportunity will increase the number of skilled cybersecurity individuals within underserved communities, enabling a diverse perspective that is essential to building a successful cybersecurity workforce.

South Memphis Renewal Community Development Corporation (SMRCDC) has been engaged in collaborating with underserved communities and persons seeking an opportunity to enhance their lives economically for more than 20 years. The funding will be used to increase access to cybersecurity education, training, support services and employment across the Delta Regional Authority along the Mississippi River Delta Region.

Per Scholas launched its cybersecurity training in 2016 and works to advance economic equity through rigorous training for tech careers, and to connect skilled talent to leading businesses. The funding will build on the capacity of Per Scholas and partners to deliver a quality training and apprenticeship program and connect learners with employment opportunities to build a more diverse cybersecurity workforce development across America, specifically in Chicago, Newark, New Jersey, New York City, and St. Louis.

“CISA is looking forward to working with both recipients to help recruit and train tomorrow’s cybersecurity leaders,” said Jen Easterly, CISA Director. “These organizations are such valuable partners and assets in building a diverse cybersecurity workforce that strengthens our nation’s cyber defense capabilities and enhances safety and security in our communities.”

CISA is committed to providing wide-ranging opportunities for quality cybersecurity education and training. It is now more urgent than ever to identify and prepare qualified individuals to enter the cybersecurity workforce and in doing so, support efforts to enhance cybersecurity infrastructure resilience. As the nation responds to ongoing adversarial cybersecurity threats, non-traditional education plays an essential part in not only ensuring our national security but creating a transformative impact in these communities.

CISA is thrilled to partner with the 2023 funding awardees and looks forward to working together to create the future pipeline of cybersecurity professionals.


About CISA 

As the nation’s cyber defense agency and national coordinator for critical infrastructure security, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency leads the national effort to understand, manage, and reduce risk to the digital and physical infrastructure Americans rely on every hour of every day.

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