The Microsoft Software and Systems Academy (MSSA) helps America's heroes secure their futures by preparing for and transitioning to high-skilled technology careers. 

Program Highlights

MSSA student working on the computer
  • Accelerated, full-time 16-week program
  • Includes academic and technical training, certification testing and practical exercises to meet urgent Information Technology industry needs
  • ​​Successful completion results in a certificate in computer science and a job interview with Microsoft
  • Open to: veterans, guard, reserve​ and active duty service members with separation or retirement dates of 180 days or less from class start date

Microsoft Software & Systems Academy (MSSA) Overview briefing

Microsoft: We still serve logo

Learning Paths

  • Cleared Talent – Cloud Application Developer

    Join our dedicated class for cleared talent to learn Azure-focused Cloud Application Development.

    Applicants must have an active Top Secret Security Clearance with an experation date that is after the end of the Cohort.

    Concepts include:

    • C# application development in Azure
    • Networking in Azure
    • Data Structures and Algorithms

    Saint Martin's credit will be awarded for the following courses:

    • CSC 160 - Computing Technologies 
    • CSC 205 - Programming in C# 
    • CSC 330 - Networking and Server Fundamentals 
    • CSC 395 - ST: Data Structure & Algorithm Concepts
    • CSC 440 - Azure Application Development 
    • CSC 457 - Developing Cloud Solutions  

    Microsoft: Meeting the Demand for Cleared Veteran Talent 

     

  • Cloud Application Development

    Become a C# programmer to build local, server-based and cloud-stored applications. 

    Concepts include:

    • Database programming
    • Data integration and manipulation
    • C# application programming with ASP.net MVC
    • C# application development in Azure

    Saint Martin's credit will be awarded for the following courses:

    • CSC 160 - Computing Technologies 
    • CSC 205 - Programming in C# 
    • CSC 305 - SQL and Application Development                
    • CSC 390 - Developing ASP.NET Web Applications  
    • CSC 440 - Azure Application Development 
    • CSC 457 - Developing Cloud Solutions  

    See potential careers

     

  • Server & Cloud Administration (Network Administration)

    Become a systems administrator who can install, configure, manage and advance the usage of IT resources on premise, in the cloud, or in a hybrid combination to meet the technology needs of major organizations. 

    Concepts include:

    • Windows Server workloads, networking, authentication and authorization
    • Cloud models
    • Azure administration

    Saint Martin's credit will be awarded for the following courses:

    • CSC 160 - Computing Technologies 
    • CSC 330 - Networking and Server Fundamentals 
    • CSC 331 - Windows Server Configuration and Management
    • CSC 332 - Configuring Advanced Windows Server Services 
    • CSC 395 - ST: Advanced Server Administration Tools
    • CSC 456 - Configuring and Deploying Cloud Technologies

    See potential careers

Program Information

  • Program eligibility

    Open to: 

    • Service members meeting criteria for Skillbridge in DoDI 1322.29
    • Honorably discharged veterans
    • National Guard
    • Reservists

    Not open to:

    • Military spouses
    • Dependents
    • Veterans with less than an honorable discharge
    • Civilians without military service
  • Academic calendar

    Important dates for the upcoming cohorts:

    Fall 2019

    • Tracks: Server & Cloud Administrator and Cloud Application Developer
    • Admissions deadline: 6 August (date all prerequisites met and packet complete)
    • Start date: 27 August
    • End date: 13 December 

    Spring 2020

    • Tracks: Server & Cloud Administrator and Cloud Application Developer
    • Admissions deadline: 3 January (date all prerequisites met and packet complete)
    • Start date: 14 January
    • End date: 8 May

    Summer 2020

    • Tracks: Server & Cloud Administrator and Cloud Application Developer
    • Admissions deadline: 1 May (date all prerequisites met and packet complete)
    • Start date: 12 May
    • End date: 21 August

    Fall 2020

    • Tracks: Server & Cloud Administrator and Cloud Application Developer
    • Admissions deadline: 14 August (date all prerequisites met and packet complete)
    • Start date: 1 September
    • End date: 18 December

    Spring 2021

    • Tracks: Server & Cloud Administrator and Cloud Application Developer
    • Admissions deadline: 3 January (date all prerequisites met and packet complete)
    • Start date: 12 January
    • End date: 7 May

    Summer 2021

    • Tracks: Server & Cloud Administrator and Cloud Application Developer
    • Admissions deadline: 1 May (date all prerequisites met and packet complete)
    • Start date: 11 May
    • End date: 20 August

     

  • Tuition & books

    Tuition

    • Primary means of payment is GI Bill
    • MSSA uses four months of GI Bill benefits
    • Tuition rates for those not using GI Bill:
      • Active duty $4,500
      • Veterans $19,075

    Books

    • GI Bill book stipend is $750
    • The required class pack containing e-books, virtual lab environments and MCP exam vouchers is approximately $500

     

    GI Bill

    If you are planning on using your VA educational benefits, prior to the orientation you will need to compete the following:

    If you have any questions, please contact the MSSA VA Certifier is Mercedes Garrido at mgarrido@stmartin.edu or (253) 584-4149

  • Residence halls

    Residence halls are available free of charge for PTDY service members using GI Bill. Veterans using Post 911 GI Bill are eligible for BAH. Residence hall rate for veterans and PTDY not using GI Bill is $2,800 for the semester. 

  • Campus locations

    MSSA has two campuses:

    Stone Education Center
    JBLM, WA 98433

    Saint Martin's University
    5000 Abbey Way SE
    Lacey, WA 98503 

    MSSA applicants must be prepared to attend at the location specified by Saint Martin’s. The location will be determined by the University based on the cohort size and number of cohorts conducted during the semester.

    Both locations will conduct classes Tuesday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Some sessions may run later depending on class projects and assignments. Classrooms are also open on Mondays for students to work on labs.

Application Process

  • Step two: Proof of service

    Upload your proof of service to your MSSA application.

    This is required to prove your eligibility for the MSSA program. Your application will not move forward until this step is completed.

    Proof of service is DD-214 for Veterans or SRB/ERB/SURF depending on your branch of service for active duty.

  • Step three: Official transcripts

    Request official transcripts from all colleges/universities you have attended. Official transcripts must be sent directly from the school you attended to Saint Martin’s University.  

    If you have sealed official transcripts, you may bring them to the Saint Martin’s Office at the Stone Education Center on JBLM. If you open the transcripts, they are no longer sealed and therefore no longer official.

    Prior to admission into the MSSA, the Office of Admissions must receive all official transcripts.

    Mail transcripts to: 
    Saint Martin’s University
    Attn: Admissions
    PO Box 33058
    JBLM-Main, WA 98433

    Or email transcripts to: MSSA.Admissions@stmartin.edu

  • Step four: Math prerequisite

    Saint Martin University MTH 101—Intermediate Algebra is the math prerequisite.

    MSSA Admissions will evaluate your official transcript to determine if you meet the math prerequisite. If you do not meet the prerequisite based on your official transcripts, you can take the MSSA math placement exam or you can take a math course that meets this prerequisite. If you plan to take the math course with a school other than Saint Martin's, email the school name and course number to MSSA.Admissions@stmartin.edu to verify the class meets the prerequisite.

    Math placement exam: Once you submit your MSSA application, you will receive instructions on how to take the MSSA math placement exam. Ensure you study prior to taking the math placement exam as you only get one chance. You will receive the link and instructions for the math placement exam via email once you submit your MSSA application. 

    Important: Students applying for the MSSA program take the math placement exam at a different web location than regular undergraduates.  If you fail to use the correct website, your math placement exam scores will be invalidated and you will be required to take any future math placement exams in a proctored environment on campus at predetermined times.

  • Step five: Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA) exam

    Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA) certification prerequisite

    Once you submit your application and upload your proof of service, Saint Martin’s University will provide you with resources to prepare for the MTA exam and a voucher code to take the MTA exam.

    Which MTA exam is required:

    • Cloud Application Development (CAD): MTA 98-361 - Software Development Fundamentals
    • Cleared Talent: Cloud Application Development (CT-CAD): MTA 98-361 - Software Development Fundamentals
    • Server & Cloud Administration (SCA): MTA 98-366 - Network Fundamentals or Valid CompTIA Net+ or Sec+ Certification

    MTA exam registration instructions

    Read the MTA registration guidelines

    Upload MTA certificate

    Upload your MTA certificate to your MSSA application.

    Failed MTA Exam

    Saint Martin's will only issue one voucher code per student. If you do not pass the exam, you may be able to use the Microsoft Military Program (MMP) to take the MTA exam again. If not, check with your local library; sometimes they have MTA exam vouchers, or you can pay out of pocket. The exam costs approximately $127.

  • Step six: Pre-program interview

    After the math and MTA prerequisites are met, the final step is the pre-program interview. MSSA routinely has more applicants than seats in the class; you will receive a seat in the class once the pre-program interview is completed and you receive the official acceptance letter.

  • Residence hall application

    If you wish to stay in the residence halls while attending the MSSA program, you must complete the online application.

    Note: MSSA students must use this link; please do not use residence hall application links found on other Saint Martin’s web pages. There is a $200 refundable security deposit required for students staying on campus.

    MSSA residence hall application

    Note: MSSA students are not required to purchase meal plans.

    Housing and dining

    The Saint Martin's Student Handbook outlines housing and residence life policies and procedures.

    Student handbook

Faculty