Homeland Security’s Employment Path

June 1, 2009
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Emphasis on homeland security threats and the professionals that analyze and formulate responses and plans has never been stronger. So has the unique quality education of these men and women.
     
The U.S. Department of Defense has established valuable internships and the American College of Forensic Examiners Institute has developed a groundbreaking Certified in Homeland Security program.
     
The effort has been replicated within educational institutions.


Need to Know

For example, Greg Allen is not the kind of professor who teaches out of old textbooks. Instead, he studies the security industry today and teaches his students what they need to know to land the jobs of tomorrow. It’s this kind of “real world” approach that helped four of his recent Bellevue University alums snag Department of Defense civilian internships, and seven master’s degree students get on the docket to present at the National Homeland Security Conference in October.
     
“This is the Bellevue University way,” said Allen. “Our slogan is Real Learning for Real Life. Our responsibility to our career-driven students is to arm them with the knowledge and skills they need to go out and make a difference on the job. I’m honored that the Department of Defense and American Board for Certification in Homeland Security appreciate what we do – and how much our students can do for them.”
     
Allen was approached by the Department of Defense to have his security management master’s degree students apply for the Palace Acquire Civilian Internships. The internships entail working in a variety of positions over three years covering security investigations, risk assessments, executive protection, physical security, security planning, and more. “I knew our students had the knowledge to hit the ground running in these jobs, so I encouraged them to apply,” said Allen. What elated him was that all four who applied got the jobs, and they are four of the total ten awarded nationwide.  “That’s an unheard of ratio of placements coming from one school,” added Allen.  “It’s an obvious testament to the quality of program, the immersion of learning about the topics integral to world security today, and the caliber of individual who chooses Bellevue University.”


Employers also Involved

Individuals are not the only ones. Employers across the nation are catching wind of such leading-edge programs, as are organizations looking for experts on current topics. Another example of that is when Professor Allen received a call for abstracts from the American Board for Certification in Homeland Security. They were looking for experts on security management to present at the National Homeland Security Conference. Allen pitched the idea to his master’s level class and the students jumped all over it, submitting their abstract entitled, “Critical Infrastructure Planning.” The Board liked what it saw and invited the seven students to present the abstract at the National Homeland Security Conference on
Oct. 16, 2009.
      
“Our programs just keep gaining more and more momentum,” commented incoming Bellevue University President Mary Hawkins, Ph.D. “Greg Allen exemplifies the professors at the university who take our programs to the top. It’s like Gretsky skating to where the puck is. We see where the industry is headed, infuse real-life situations and lessons into our curriculum, and prepare our students to apply what they’ve learned with real time, real world solutions on the job. Employers like what they see and send more students to us.” This is the second time that Bellevue University Security Management students have been asked to present to national conferences. The first was at ASIS.


Job Market Growth

Homeland security is one of the fastest growing areas in the job market today. Graduates can find opportunities in both the public and private sectors from local, state, and federal law enforcement to emergency services and intelligence analysis.
     
Another source is the American Military University, which offers bachelor and masters degree programs. In the homeland security area, there is considerable discussion about concepts such as all-hazards approach, emergency and disaster management, risk prevention and management, counter-terrorism, consequence management and consequence mitigation, and others. 
     
The International Foundation for Protection Officers also offers individual training leading to certification in the general areas of security officers and security supervisors.

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