What is a Homeland Security Degree?

Homeland-Security-DegreeMany homeland security degree programs were developed at the start of the twenty-first century in response to the growing number of issues and concerns with homeland security and safety of the United States. From dealing with everything from man-made attacks on security and safety to handling and planning for the potential destruction of a natural disaster, homeland security professionals are trained and knowledgeable on keeping the people of the United States as safe as possible.

Homeland Security Courses

Students looking to complete an education in homeland security have a number of options when beginning to choose an institution. From certification to master’s level degree programs, the education that best fits with one’s needs and future goals can be found online or on-campus around the United States.

When beginning a bachelor’s level program in homeland security, students begin by studying homeland security introductory courses in addition to general education credits. One of the introductory courses typically include an orientation in homeland security, which begins to introduce students to the theories, policies, and issues associated with a career in this field.

In addition to these introductory courses, student also complete a number of courses in their major program of study such as legal issues in homeland security, infrastructure planning and development, domestic security, security technologies, disaster response, and counter-intelligence.

Additional courses also often include information technology, cyber security, critical analysis, written analysis, and communication. The diverse curriculum is helpful for preparing students for a number of possibilities for employment.

Professions in Homeland Security

When thinking about earning a degree in homeland security, most people might immediately envision a federal agent in a plain, black suit. While there are a number of secret service and FBI positions for qualified applicants, there are other avenues for graduates to consider as well. Many programs, for instance, offer programs that are specifically designed to prepare students for the private sector.

Certifications are also often helpful for qualifying for a position. For additional information on certifications in homeland security, visit the National Domestic Preparedness Coalition website.

From a homeland security degree program, graduates have taken away a number of skills and expertise, including analysis, intelligence sharing, disaster preparedness, disaster response, infrastructure, and infrastructure design and analysis. This prepares graduates for careers in customs, emergency management for government municipalities, private security, drug enforcement, corporate security, airports and border patrol.

Homeland Security Skill Requirements

In addition to a degree or a certificate, candidates looking for work in a homeland security position must also meet other types of criteria. In some positions, for example, candidates will be screened for background, drugs and alcohol use, and mental health prior to completing the employment process.

In other cases, a unique set of skills is required. Some positions will require candidates to be multi-lingual, and in other cases, employers will be looking for a diverse knowledge base from science, technology, or engineering.

Professionals in the homeland security profession must also be able to manage time effectively, work in teams, lead projects and individuals, be discreet, have a solid moral and ethical foundation, and communicate effectively. For individuals who meet these requirements and possess additional skills in addition to having earned the appropriate homeland security degree, there are options for getting started in the homeland security profession.