Admission to the ACES Living-Learning Program

The ACES Living-Learning Program is located within the Honors College at the University of Maryland. Prospective first-year students who have been invited to participate in the Honors College may be considered for admission to the ACES Living-Learning Program. Each fall a cohort of approximately 75 freshmen interested in cybersecurity enter the program.

During the admission process ACES aims to select academically talented students who are interested in participating in a collaborative team-based enviornment to study the complex challenges of cybersecurity. As the program emphasizes a multidiscplinary approach, living-learning program students learn both technical and non-technical skills through interactive classes, team projects, experiential learning, and extracurricular activities. 

Successful ACES Living-Learning Program students demonstrate a strong academic performance at the high school level, a willingness to learn and develop in a collaborative environment and a passion for accelerating the field of cybersecurity. 

Application Process

Invitations to participate in ACES are coordinated with the Honors College and the university's Office of Undergraduate Admissions

First-year applicants to the University of Maryland are automatically considered for admission to the Honors College when they submit a completed undergraduate application by the preferred November 1 deadline and are admitted. Prospective students who apply by the November 1 priority deadline are typically notified in late January of their admission decision (including their Honors College invitation status).

Once invited to the Honors College in late January, prospective students are then invited to express their interest for the different living-learning programs within the Honors College, including the ACES Living-Learning Program. Students who express strong interest in the ACES Living-Learning Program are reviewed by ACES program staff, who select students for the incoming cohort. Students are typically notified of their ACES Living-Learning Program invitation by late February or early March.

To be considered for the ACES Program, it is recommended that prospective students:

  • Have an outstanding high school academic record, particularly in mathematics and science courses [AP Calculus BC Course is not a requirement but is encouraged]
  • Express an interest in studying cybersecurity [Previous coursework or experience is not required but may be considered a positive indication of interest in the field]
  • Possess an interest and potentially some first-hand experience with computer languages [AP Computer Science is not a requirement but is encouraged]


Answers to frequently asked questions are available here. Please direct additional questions to the ACES program at