Frequently Asked Questions

Below are a list of Freqently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the W2CCA.

1.  What is the W2CCA? 

Answer: The Wounded Warrior Cyber Combat Academy is focused on helping wounded, ill or injured (WII) service members – starting with those at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda and followed by other installations in the metropolitan Washington, D.C. area – transition to careers in Cyber Security.  This encompasses both individuals seeking to transition to either civilians life or those wishing to stay on active duty but transition to a different military specialty/MOS if you cannot retain your current one. The W2CCA offers Cyber Security courses structured for students to build IT technical skills in order to pass specific IT industry certifications exams.  There is a nation-wide shortage of qualified Cyber Security professionals, and WIIs are ideal candidates to fill this gap. Our instructors are IT industry and Cyber Security certified professionals. Our program uses a mix of week-night classes, both virtual and in class sessions to introduce the student to IT domains and build skill complimentary to industry certification (See: How to Build Technical Cyber Capabilities).

2.  Who is running the program?

Answer: The W2CCA Program is being administered by the Federal IT Security Institute on behalf of the FITSI Foundation.  At Walter Reed, Bethesda, the W2CCA is under the sponsorship of the Bethesda Naval Support Activity’s Fleet and Family Services. In the future, the W2CCA may expand locations in the metropolitan Washington, D.C. area, (WMA) where training will be offered.


3. How is the program governed? 

Answer: The W2CCA is being run by the FITSI Foundation which is a 501c(3)* non-profit organization and is overseen by four "concerned citizens" who are FITSI members and interested in promoting the development of cyber defenders and dedicated to helping WIIs. Three of the four members are veterans. 

*The FITSI Foundation is a 501c3 public charity and is recognized by Internal Revenue Service as such.  All donations made to the Foundation are fully deductible under Section 170 of the Internal Revenue Code.

4.  How many Wounded Warriors do you plan on training? 

Answer: We have no planned limit on the number of students that can be trained through the W2CCA. As the W2CCA’s focus is building technical skills aligned with professional certifications, multiple classes consisting of up to 20 students can be run in parallel. The number of classes, delivery formats, and schedule will be tailored to the needs of WII and their family members.


5.  Can family members of a Wounded Warrior take the classes? 

Answer: Yes. The need for Cyber Security professionals is great and cannot be satisfied by just WII members alone.  Spouses and Non-Military Attendants (NMA) of WII  are eligible W2CCA candidates. Generally speaking, enrollment priority is given to WIIs.  Proof of eligibility such as a dependent identification card or NMA orders are required as proof of eligibility.

6.  What does it cost?

Answer: There is currently no planned cost to the student. Both classes and exams are offered free of charge.

7.  Who is paying for the program?   Is there a charge to the service member? 

Answer: The W2CCA is being run by the FITSI Foundation which is a 501c(3)* charity. Currently, business sponsor donations for training materials, collaboration software, and certification test vouchers for students are covering costs of the first cohorts. There is no cost to the service member. It is a W2CCA assumption that students have their own laptop (mobile) device with which they can log onto a network in order to work on-line and access training materials. 

*The FITSI Foundation is a 501c3 public charity and is recognized by Internal Revenue Service as such.  All donations made to the Foundation are fully deductible under Section 170 of the Internal Revenue Code.

8.  Can active service members who are not wounded apply for the program? 

Answer: At this time, no.  W2CCA is focused on helping WIIs in rehabilitation and warriors in transition (WTs) seek careers in Cyber Security. Therefore, active service members not in this category are generally not eligible for the W2CCA.

9.  How do I enroll in the program? 

Answer: Enrollment is on-line through the’s registration page. Active duty WII should obtain command approval prior to enrollment in the W2CCA, and enrollment information will be shared with service member commanders and occupational therapists to prevent schedule conflicts. Classes are planned for evenings in order to minimize disruptions with day-time appointments. It is incumbent upon the student, if an active duty member, to obtain command approval prior to enrollment. There is an expected commitment of time on behalf of the enrollee. 

10. How is eligibility determined? 

Answer: Eligibility is determined with the assistance of Occupational Therapists. Service members awaiting Med boards (both PEB and MEB) may request a ‘Statement of Service’ from their command and provide such as verification of eligibility.  

11. Can retirees apply? 

Answer:  Yes, if a service disabled veterans.   

12. Are there any restrictions on eligibility?

Answer: Our program is not structured to accommodate active duty members who are not WII.  WII / WT members and their family members are the intended audience of this program.   

13. What makes this program different from other programs?

Answer: The W2CCA’s focus is on building technical skills and IT professional certifications for those interested in Cyber Security careers. We are not training students with the expectation of realizing any economic benefit.  While we encourage all WII and veterans to continuously pursue every educational opportunity available to them using their GI bill and VA benefits, the IT and Cyber Security industry has a bias towards professional certifications as a measure of technical competency. Demonstration of technical skills through industry certifications is a baseline that a hiring manager uses to compare candidates with different backgrounds and degrees from educational institutions.  For example, a certification, such as Network +, Security +, or Security Certified Network Specialist (SCNS) states to a perspective employer that you have a set level of IT knowledge and skills.

14. Is there guaranteed employment after training ends?

Answer: The W2CCA provides technical training to WII veterans and eligible members aligned with Cyber Security (IT industry) certifications in order to make students more likely to succeed in a Cyber Security career.  The W2CCA does not hire or place individuals with employers. However, as advocates of Cyber Security and supporters of the wounded warrior community, we currently are working with the many established Wounded Warrior support organizations already assisting and mentoring individuals and family members with career planning, education counseling, benefits counseling, and job placement and internships. The W2CCA is an extension of that network.