The Citadel will use a multimillion-dollar National Science Foundation grant to stand up a scholarship program aimed at recruiting and training the next generation of cybersecurity experts and professionals.

The grant, a total $2.8 million, is the largest The Citadel has earned to date.

The first-in-the-state CyberCorps Scholarship for Service program will support undergraduate students pursuing a major in computer science, cyber operations, intelligence and security studies and criminal justice with a minor in cybersecurity.

"The outcome of the project will be a pool of principled leaders with cybersecurity skills in multiple domains who can serve in the Charleston area where there are numerous cybersecurity enterprises such as the Naval Information Warfare Center (Atlantic), or wherever they are most needed," Shankar Banik, the professor and head of the Department of Cyber and Computer Sciences at the military college, said in a prepared statement.

The CyberCorps Scholarship for Service program was established about two decades ago, with the first grants awarded in 2001. Since then, about 3,600 program graduates have found placement at more than 140 government entities.

"CyberCorps SFS at The Citadel will provide a steady supply of highly trained cybersecurity graduates for government positions over the next several years," Banik said.

Fort Gordon in nearby Georgia is home to the U.S. Army's cyber center of excellence.

Colin Demarest covers the Savannah River Site, the U.S. Department of Energy, the National Nuclear Security Administration and government in general. Follow him on Twitter: @demarest_colin