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Homeland Security: The UDC Edge

Our location in Washington, D.C., gives you exclusive opportunities to learn from the thinkers and decision-makers shaping our nation’s homeland security efforts. You will learn from active practitioners who provide unique, real-time insight into the field and serve as mentors to students seeking employment.

Back on campus, our curriculum emphasizes the use of computer-based models to analyze issues in the realm of homeland security, grounding your studies in modern methods and strategies. Our focus on research develops your skills in quantitative and qualitative research methods, and prepares you for both analytics and operational work.

Master’s Degree (MS) in Homeland Security

Homeland security is a swiftly evolving field, with constantly emerging areas of concern and new technologies. It is also uniquely compelling, given its critical role for our national security.

You may be a professional in the field seeking new skills and advancement, or you may be a recent college graduate feeling like you were meant to be a part of something larger than yourself by protecting and securing our nation. Either way, the master’s degree program in homeland security program at the University of the District of Columbia has a place for you.

Our program examines the effort by governments to protect their territory and interests from hazards and disasters, whether internal or external, natural and human made. In line with the University’s land-grant mission of service to the community, the homeland security master’s degree program at UDC focuses on community preparedness, response and recovery from catastrophic events.

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Curriculum and Requirements in the UDC Homeland Security Graduate Program

The master’s degree in homeland security is a rigorous course of study comprising 35 credit hours, spanning four curricular components:

  • Core courses            
  • Core interdisciplinary courses
  • Concentration or elective courses either in the department or in another discipline 
  • Thesis or public policy paper representing a capstone experience                                              

Since homeland security is a quickly evolving field, our program is adaptive to the changing landscape, and we work with you to create a specialized academic concentration within the homeland security master’s degree program that suits your needs and interests. Example of past student concentrations include:

  • Emergency Management
  • Cybersecurity
  • Terrorism and counter-terrorism
  • Peacekeeping and security
  • Epidemiology
  • Intelligence

The program typically takes two years for a full-time student to complete.  You may also complete the program in as short as 18 months or on a part-time basis. Our evening classes make it easy to continue working full-time while pursuing a degree.

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Student Organizations and Activities in the UDC Homeland Security Program

Co-curricular opportunities include forums, symposiums, conferences and internships that all take advantage of the program’s central location in the nation’s capital. Events and other program information are frequently posted to the departmental blog.

Students get to observe and participate directly in government activities, such as State Department security briefings. You may also work with faculty on both funded and unfunded research projects in a range of homeland security areas directly for government agency clients.

Faculty Spotlight: UDC Homeland Security Program

Program director Angelyn Flowers, J.D., Ph.D., serves on the Academic Advisory Board for Weapons of Mass Destruction and Terrorism, in the McGraw-Hill Contemporary Learning Series, and is the project director for the National Legal Preparedness Training Program. She studies computer-based simulations of terrorist incidents and natural disasters to gauge the efficacy of particular response strategies, and her current research interests are rightwing extremism and complex systems analysis.    

Ambassador Curtis Ward, Esq., former ambassador of Jamaica to the U.N., is an expert in national and international security law and policy; counter-terrorism legal and operational capacity assessments and solutions; international sanctions; rule of law and governance and geopolitical strategy analyses. As ambassador, he served for two years on the UN Security Council.

Otto Hetzel, Esq., is co-editor of the second edition of Homeland Security & Emergency Management:  A Legal Guide for State and Local Governments, the second edition of which was published in 2010. He serves as vice-chair of the Homeland Security and Emergency Management Committee of the American Bar Association (ABA), state and local government section, and he was on the ABA Hurricane Katrina Task Force Legal Subcommittee and helped draft its highly regarded report on Katrina. 

Career Pathways and Prospects

A master’s degree in homeland security at UDC prepares you for employment or advancement at government agencies such as FEMA, FBI, the Department of Homeland Security, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Some in-demand job opportunities that you may pursue include:

  • Emergency management
  • Intelligence analysis
  • Cybersecurity specialist
  • Counter-terrorism research
  • Human rights research and advocacy
  • Disaster relief
  • International peacekeeping

You may also find a career in the private sector, including the burgeoning field of continuity of operations and planning for businesses, or with non-academic research bodies and international non-governmental organizations. You may also pursue a Ph.D. in a related field such as international affairs or global studies.

Contact info:

E: MSHS@udc.edu  | T: 202.274. 5494