Launch a Cybersecurity Career Affordably with the SANS.edu Income Share Agreement (ISA)

SANS.edu is proud to be an NSA Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense.

Make little or no college payments until you get a job. That's the promise of the SANS.edu Income Share Agreement (ISA).

The SANS Technology Institute (SANS.edu) — the best college in cybersecurity — launched an income share agreement (ISA) to make our upper division undergraduate programs more accessible to U.S. applicants who demonstrate high potential to succeed.

Our Investment in Your Success

If you are offered and accept our Income Share Agreement (ISA), you'll pay little or nothing toward your tuition until after you've completed your undergraduate program and are earning at least $40,000 per year. We only receive payments when you succeed.

The average starting salary for our job-seeking Applied Cybersecurity Certificate graduates is $104,000. The average starting salary for our job-seeking cybersecurity bachelor's degree graduates is $110,000.

How SANS's ISA Works for You

Numbers at a Glance

$40K
The ISA doesn't start until you're making at least $40K per year. The average starting salary of our graduates is $104K for the ACS program and $110K for the BACS program.
8%
You'll pay 8% of your gross income until you reach your payment cap of $21,250 for an undergraduate certificate in Applied Cybersecurity or $46,050 for a bachelor’s degree. You will never pay more than that.
$0
For any month you're not earning income, your ISA payments are deferred. There's no interest.
$0
If you've accumulated 4 years of deferred monthly payments because you haven't earned the monthly equivalent of $40K or more per year, your ISA expires, even if you've paid nothing.
Student attends info session

Join an Online Info Session for Undergraduate Cybersecurity Programs

Learn more about the SANS.edu undergraduate programs in cybersecurity at a free online info session. Our Applied Cybersecurity Certificate (ACS) graduates have an average starting salary of $104K and our bachelor's degree (BACS) graduates have an average starting salary of $110K. We'll discuss why they become so marketable and how our Career Center supports their job search — and we'll answer your questions.

Thu, June 13 at 11 am (ET)

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Apply now to the Applied Cybersecurity Certificate or bachelor's degree program to be considered for the ISA.

Jake Danuser

Success Story: Jake Danuser

Undergraduate Certificate in Applied Cybersecurity

Jake Danuser looked at 50 different schools before selecting SANS.edu for its stellar reputation, GIAC certifications, and positive return on investment. He used the college’s Income Share Agreement (ISA) to fund the program and, in his words, “made enough salary gains to pay for the program twice.”

Michelle-Porter.jpg

Success Story: Michelle Porter

Undergraduate Certificate in Applied Cybersecurity

Michelle Porter beat out more than 10,000 applicants to earn one of 20 spots in Deloitte's inaugural Cyber Career Accelerator Program. She credits her success to the SANS.edu cybersecurity certificate program, which she funded using the college's Income Share Agreement (ISA), saying she made a solid return on investment in "experience, industry connections, and earnings." Learn how this former music education major made the leap to cybersecurity.

Learn More about the Income Share Agreement

Find out more about the SANS.edu Income Share Agreement and get answers to frequently asked questions in this video overview of the ISA.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are you offering the Income Share Agreement?

We want to make our upper division undergraduate programs more accessible to U.S. students and permanent residents who demonstrate high potential to succeed. We're aligning our goals with our students', so SANS.edu only gets paid when an income share agreement student succeeds.

Note that the ISA is available for our Applied Cybersecurity Certificate program and bachelor's degree program, but not for the lower division Cybersecurity Fundamentals Certificate program.

Do I need experience to qualify?

No prior experience in computer science or cybersecurity is required for the assessment exam, the undergraduate programs, or selection for the ISA. In order to qualify for one of our bachelor’s degree programs, applicants must currently hold an associate degree or at least 70 transferrable college credits. Please see the bachelor’s degrees page for more information.

Are International students eligible for the ISA?

Eligible applicants for the ISA must be US citizens or permanent residents and currently have a US address and US phone number.

Will SANS.edu help me with my job search?

Yes, the SANS.edu Career Center offers professional advice and resources to help students in our Applied Cybersecurity Certificate and bachelor's degree program with each step of the job seeking process. Cybersecurity is the only focus of our Career Center and we draw on SANS's unmatched professional expertise and vast industry network to connect you to opportunities in the field.

How do you decide which students are offered the Income Share Agreement option?

The ISA option is offered to select highly qualified U.S. students and permanent residents who meet the minimum credit threshold. Applicants with no credit history may still be considered for ISA. Applicants with an established credit history and score below 650 are unlikely to be approved. All U.S. citizens who have been admitted to our undergraduate programs can be considered for the ISA. To identify students with the greatest potential, the Admissions team considers several factors, including prior academic performance and performance on a proprietary assessment exam that measures your likelihood to excel at cybersecurity.

When do ISA payments begin? 

Once you complete your program, Leif, our Program Manager, will work with you to verify your income. Once you are earning above the Minimum Income Threshold, you will make monthly payments of 8% of your pre-tax monthly income through the Leif portal.

How much will I pay?

For the undergraduate Applied Cybersecurity Certificate program, you will stop making payments once you reach the sooner of 60 qualified payment months or when you hit the payment cap of $21,250. You will never pay more than the payment cap and if you don't earn the monthly equivalent of $40K or above per year, your ISA will be forgiven after 4 years, even if you paid nothing at all.

For the bachelor's degree programs, you will stop making payments once you reach the sooner of 96 qualified payment months or when you hit the payment cap of $46,050. You will never pay more than the payment cap and if you don't earn the monthly equivalent of $40K or above per year, your ISA will be forgiven after 4 years, even if you paid nothing at all.

Is there a limit on how much I will pay, even if I earn a lot of money?

Yes, you will never be required to pay more than a total of $21,250 for the education received through the undergraduate certificate program or $46,050 for one of our bachelor's degree programs.

If I’m already employed in the field, can I qualify for the ISA?

If you have already been employed in the field for more than a year, you may be considered for the college's Tuition Payment Program.

If I currently earn more than $40,000 per year, can I still qualify for the ISA?

Regardless of employment status or salary, every undergraduate applicant who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident can be considered for the ISA.

Is there an additional cost for participating in the ISA?

Students who participate in the ISA pay 15% more than the base tuition cost.

Can I use the ISA for the Applied Cybersecurity Certificate program and then the bachelor’s degree program?

Yes, but students who use the ISA for the Applied Cybersecurity Certificate program must pay the balance owed in full before applying for another ISA for the bachelor’s degree program.

What if I no longer need the ISA at some point in the program?

Whether due to another funding source, recent employment, or other reason, students can choose to opt out of the remainder of the ISA and pay the base tuition for remaining courses.

What if I lose my job?

If you lose your job or earn below the Minimum Income Threshold, you will be placed into the Deferment Period and no payments will be due until you are earning above the Minimum Income Threshold again.

What happens if I don't finish the program?

Should a student under ISA contract withdraw or be dismissed from the undergraduate program, they will be eligible to reduce their ISA payment cap obligation in proportion to their progress through the program.

I already have a bachelor’s degree, can I get an ISA for the bachelor’s degree program?

If you want to launch a cybersecurity career and already have a bachelor’s degree or higher, our undergraduate certificate program in Applied Cybersecurity may be a good fit for you. At this time, we are only offering an ISA for the SANS.edu bachelor's degree programs to students who currently do not have a bachelor's degree. For more information on our undergraduate programs and finding the right fit for you, schedule a time to meet with our admissions team.

I have more questions.

We're happy to help. Email info@sans.edu or call 301.241.7665.

Questions?

We're happy to help. Email info@sans.edu or call 301.241.7665.