The Linux Foundation is once again this year sponsoring scholarships for students and young professionals interested in open source software development through the Linux Training Scholarship Program, which is now accepting applications.

Successful applicants will receive free registration for one of the training courses that the Linux Foundation offers in niches ranging from embedded Linux development, to OpenStack cloud administration, to KVM virtualization. Unlike the "Introduction to Linux" course that the Linux Foundation and edX recently launched as a free MOOC, those classes normally require registration fees.

This year's scholarship program has changed little from the 2013 offering, which also awarded one scholarship for each of the five following categories:

  • Whiz Kids
  • Women in Linux
  • SysAdmin Super Stars
  • Developer Do-Gooders
  • Linux Kernel Gurus

However, interest in the program, which launched in 2011, continues to grow. The Linux Foundation reported receiving nearly 700 applications in 2013, up from around 500 the year before.

That interest likely reflects the steadiness of demand for expertise in Linux and other open source software development and administration. Citing its 2014 Linux Jobs Report, the Linux Foundation said, "Seventy-seven percent of hiring managers have 'hiring Linux talent' on their list of priorities for 2014, up from 70 percent a year ago," and "more than nine in ten hiring managers plan to hire a Linux professional in the next six months."

Applications for the 2014 scholarship program are due Sept. 2—right after the 75th commemoration of the day that forms the basis for one of my favorite poems, although pointing out that incidence in your application may do little to increase your odds of success.