Virginia Tech® home

Defense Civilian Training Corps

Defense Civilian Training Corps

The Defense Civilian Training Corps is a NEW pilot program for students to build civilian careers in the Department of Defense (DoD).  This program is open to all students at VT with an interest in DoD careers related to acquisition, digital technologies, critical technologies, science, engineering, and finance. 



DCTC scholarships will pay 100% of academic tuition, plus fees and a monthly stipend, for the duration of the award. DCTC scholars will enroll in courses that complement their major and expose them to capstone projects and DoD challenge events.


Receive summer internship placement, mentoring, leadership training, guidance on security clearances and skills for jobs in acquisition, critical technologies like AI and machine learning, engineering, finance, contracting, management, business, public policy, and other dynamic fields.


Earn early job placement in DoD organizations and research labs, plus opportunities for career development and growth with other federal agencies, academia, large companies and emerging startups

Students must be in good standing with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Proof of U.S. citizenship and the ability to obtain and maintain a DoD security clearance are required.

Is the Defense Civilian Training Corps (DCTC) like ROTC? 

The DCTC program is a talent pipeline to recruit top talent for the civilian workforce. Similar to the military ROTC program, the curriculum includes a summer internship component, and students joining in Fall 2024 and beyond will incur a service obligation with their scholarship. Upon graduation, DCTC Scholars will be placed in DoD labs or command organizations to begin their career in federal service. Civilians wear business or business casual dress in the workplace.

What are the benefits of working for DoD as a civilian?

The DoD employs 950,000 civilians, many serving in critical positions worldwide. There are a multitude of opportunities requiring a diverse range of skills. If a competitive salary, great benefits, unsurpassed training, and the pride of defending our Nation interests you, then your future is with DoD. Across DoD the key principles of employee engagement, results-driven, honor, duty and integrity, teamwork, family-oriented, and diversity and inclusion foster a supportive and productive culture and environment. DoD civilian employees are committed to the national security mission and their cutting edge, innovative, and impactful work motivates them every day.


How do I know about my ability to obtain a DoD security clearance?

Please visit the below websites for additional information on eligibility guidelines for obtaining a security clearance:

What materials do I need to apply?

To apply for a DCTC scholarship, you must submit a transcript, resume, and short statement of interest. The DCTC representative at each pilot university will provide an application.

Is it okay that I’m a non-STEM major?

Yes, DCTC is designed for students pursuing an undergraduate degree relating to acquisition or finance, as well as digital technologies, critical technologies, science, or engineering. Students in majors such as business, supply chain management, contracting, and pre-law are encouraged to apply. The DCTC curriculum is designed for interdisciplinary, project-based learning; an environment in which students from varied academic backgrounds will collaborate to solve complex, real-life problems.

How will my current financial aid be affected if I receive a DCTC scholarship? 

Check with your university Financial Aid office to address questions concerning impact to existing tuition aid, housing, etc.

Will I receive a minor or a certificate for completing DCTC curriculum?

The process for evaluating the DCTC curriculum for consideration as a minor or certificate program will be university-specific

The application window for Cohort 1 has closed. The Cohort 2 Call for Applications will likely be released in Fall 2024.

If you have questions, please contact Ken Mallory ( about the program.