Service Agreement

SFS Student - please keep your service agreement on file.  The text of this year’s Service Agreement is as follows: 

CyberCorps®: Scholarship For Service (SFS)

(Scholarship Track)

Service Agreement

The CyberCorps®: Scholarship For Service (SFS) Program provides the means for program-approved academic institutions to grant scholarships to students (hereinafter referred to as participants) who agree to pursue a degree in the information assurance fields and serve at an approved Federal, State, local, or tribal Government agency (hereinafter referred to as “participating agency”) in a qualifying position (i.e., a position in the information assurance field) for a period of up to three years upon completing academic degree requirements, depending on the length of the scholarship. This Service Agreement sets forth the participant’s responsibilities.

I. Participant Responsibilities

The SFS scholarship participant agrees to the following:

1. Scholarship Phase:

During the scholarship phase the participant will:

  1. maintain enrollment at a participating college or university on a full-time basis;
  2. maintain good academic standing, as defined by his or her academic institution, in an information assurance program of study;
  3. at the end of the semester (or quarter or trimester, as applicable), submit an official course transcript to the Principal Investigator (PI) at the academic institution, the hiring official at the participating agency making an employment offer to the participant, or to the SFS Program Office, if so requested, listing the courses in which the participant is enrolled and the final grade(s) received;
  4. if the period of scholarship exceeds an academic year, search for and serve an information assurance-related internship of at least 10 weeks at a participating agency;
  5. participate in SFS-sponsored job fairs and all other SFS program activities;
  6. register with the SFS program, complete a participant profile, and create a résumé on-line at www.sfs.opm.gov;
  7. update SFS profile (résumé, job search activity report, and contact information) at least once quarterly;
  8. search for post-graduation employment with a participating agency in an information assurance-related position;
  9. complete periodic surveys as requested by the SFS Program Office; and
  10. respond to all requests from SFS Program Office and PI for information concerning the SFS program and participant status in accordance with guidance provided in the request.

2. Commitment Phase:

Following completion of academic degree requirements, the participant will:

  1. work full time in a qualifying position at a participating agency for a period commensurate with the length of the scholarship or one year, whichever is longer;i
  2. provide documentation to the SFS Program Office verifying employment;
  3. ensure contact information in SFS profile remains current throughout period of obligation;
  4. complete periodic surveys as requested by the SFS Program Office; and
  5. respond to all requests from SFS Program Office and PI for information concerning the SFS program and participant status in accordance with guidance provided in the request.

3. Monitoring Phase:

Upon completion of the Service Commitment Participants enter the Monitoring Phase. During this phase the Program Office monitors the Participant’s employment status and keeps current contact information on Participants. This begins upon completion of the Service Commitment and concludes 8 years after the Service Commitment end date. Participants will be required to:

  1. update contact information when it changes;
  2. complete periodic surveys as requested by SFS Program Office (usually annually).

4. Failure to secure a qualifying position:

If participant has not secured a qualifying position upon graduation, the participant agrees to:

  1. continue to search for employment with a participating agency in a qualifying position;
  2. respond to all requests from SFS Program Office and PI for information concerning the SFS service commitment in accordance with guidance provided in the request; and
  3. continue to update SFS profile (résumé, job search activity report, and contact information) at least once quarterly.

It is expected that the participant enters the commitment phase within 18 months of graduation however an extension may be granted by the SFS Program Office. If the participant has not secured a qualifying position within 18 months of graduation or by the end of the granted extension the participant understands that he/she will be indebted to the Federal Government and may be required to reimburse the SFS Program. Section II-2 addresses exceptions.

II. Participant Reimbursement to the Federal Government

1. A participant who fails to comply with any Program requirement established under this Service Agreement will be indebted to the Federal Government and must immediately reimburse the SFS Program. Failure to promptly reimburse the SFS Program will require that the funds be collected as a debt owed the U.S. Treasury.ii The reimbursable amount will be prorated based on time already served to fulfill the employment obligation following completion of degree requirements.

  1. Failure to fulfill the terms of the program during the scholarship phase occurs for any of the following reasons:
  1. the participant’s enrollment is terminated by the academic institution for reasons under the control of the participant (including failure to meet academic or behavioral standards);
  2. any changes to the participant’s curriculum or major field of study that are not compatible with the SFS program;
  3. failure to complete academic degree requirements within the scholarship period unless there are mitigating circumstances agreed to by the SFS Program Office;
  4. the participant fails to qualify for internship placement, including obtaining a security clearance if required;
  5. the participant is terminated from any Federal appointment for cause; or
  6. the participant otherwise breaches the terms of this agreement.

b. Failure to complete the period of employment in a qualifying position occurs if the participant fails to gain employment at a participating agency, employment is terminated, or the participant leaves a qualifying position, for any of the following reasons before the post-academic employment commitment is fulfilled:

  1. the participant fails to qualify for post-graduation placement, including obtaining a security clearance if required;
  2. the employee resigns;
  3. the employee is terminated for cause or for adverse suitability/security clearance determinations;iii
  4. the employee initiates action that results in reassignment, promotion or transfer to a non-covered position;
  5. the employee refuses an offer of reassignment or transfer to a covered position in the commuting area when such an action becomes necessary because of changes in the employer’s staffing needs, organizational realignment, or staff reductions; or
  6. the employee otherwise breaches the terms of this agreement.

2. Participant reimbursement is not required under any of the following conditions:

  1. the participant receives and accepts an offer from an agency designated as “participating” by the SFS Program Office and that agency is, through no fault of the participant, unable to place the participant in a covered position that permits the fulfillment of the employment obligation upon completion of academic degree requirements; and the SFS Program Office is unable to effect alternative placement in a covered position within the continental United States;
  2. the participant is reassigned to a non-qualifying position due to changes in staff requirements, organizational realignment, or staff reductions, or at management’s discretion;
  3. the participant is involuntarily separated for reasons other than misconduct or performance;
  4. the participant leaves the agency voluntarily to enter into the service of any other participating agency in a qualified position; or
  5. the National Science Foundation (NSF) determines that seeking reimbursement is not in the Federal Government’s best interests.

I certify that I have read and understand the terms of this service agreement. I further certify that I am a United States citizen, and (if a male born after December 31, 1959) have registered with the Selective Service System, or am exempt from having to do so under Selective Service law.

Footnotes

i. An academic year (nine months) of scholarship establishes a requirement for one calendar year of work. Participants must be willing to relocate anywhere within the continental United States. Please note that a high percentage of positions are in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.

ii. If a participant fails to meet the terms of this agreement and is found to be indebted to the Federal Government the participant will be required to reimburse the United States Department of Treasury a sum equal to the amount outstanding plus administrative and interest fees, if any. These funds will be recovered from the participant through the appropriate provisions governing debt collection.

iii. Terminations for cause or adverse suitability/security clearance determinations may occur for any of the following reasons:

  • misconduct or negligence in employment;
  • criminal or dishonest conduct;
  • material, intentional false statement or deception or fraud in examination or appointment;
  • alcohol abuse of a nature and duration which suggests that the applicant or appointee would be prevented from performing the duties of the position to which appointed, or would constitute a direct threat to the property and safety of others;
  • illegal use of narcotics, drugs, or other controlled substances, without evidence of substantial rehabilitation; or
  • knowing and willfully engaging in acts or activities designed to overthrow the U.S. Government by force.