If you've spent the early part of the 2000s frozen in a block of ice then you missed it. Computers are taking over the world. This is music to the ears of computer geeks and specialists. A degree in computer science ensures you will always have a job opening as more firms rely on more technologies and more business focus their efforts on the Web.

The even better news for computer science majors is there are lots of computer science scholarships available. As tech firms have hit it big on Wall Street they have looked back to offer a hand up to the next generation of innovators, designers and programmers.

Like most majors, colleges of computer science offer their own in-house scholarships. These awards vary in amount, but the real money in the world of often lies outside the world of higher education.

Many tech-reliant firms, such as Hewlett Packard, Google and Sun Microsystems, offer computer science scholarships. Many of these scholarships are given out at a national level. But tech-based businesses do give awards through local schools or endow quality computer science programs that routinely provide qualified graduates and interns.

Microsoft, for example, gave out $ 500,000 in scholarships during the 2006-2007 school year. They have four basic types of computer science scholarships. They award general scholarships and scholarships for women, underrepresented minorities and students with disabilities. The bad news: You'll be competing with students from across North America to get the money.

There is plenty of good news on the computer science scholarship front for women. There are loads of awards specifically for women entering computer science and related fields. These scholarships are supported by schools, private business and non-profit groups. There is a large push right now for more women to enter math- and science-related fields. The amount of scholarship money available may be the deciding factor if you're a young woman considering computer science.