How to Get a Job in Homeland Security

People who desire to play an active role in protecting the country from terrorism should know how to get a job in homeland security. Homeland security is a fairly new term that arose from the reorganization of several US government agencies as a direct result of the September 11 attacks. It is often used in relation to Homeland Defense which is the protection of US territory and everything in it against external threats and aggression.

What is Homeland Security?

Homeland Security refers to the comprehensive efforts to prevent terrorist attacks within the country. These efforts include finding ways in reducing the country’s vulnerability to terrorism while strengthening the capability for recovery should terrorist attack occur. Damage control is also a major issue in homeland security.

The reorganization of US government agencies produced the US Department of Homeland Security. Homeland Security activities are also being performed by agencies outside the department such as the FBI and the CIA. Other executive departments as well are significant players in homeland security.

Degree Program Choices

Students who seek possible careers in homeland security will be glad to know that there are various relevant educational programs offered by colleges and universities all over the country. These programs are offered on campus or in the online format. One of your best options is to get a degree from a criminal justice school. Basic information is usually provided through official school websites while additional information is made available upon request.

California University of Pennsylvania offers the online MS in Legal Studies with Tracks in Law and Public Policy, Homeland Security, and Criminal Justice. Penn State Online offers its Home and Security Degree Program in 5 specializations namely Public Health Preparedness, Geospatial Intelligence, Information Security and Forensics, Agricultural Biosecurity, and the Base Program. The American Military University offers its BA and MA in Homeland Security and an undergraduate Certificate for Weapons of Mass Destruction Preparedness. There are many other schools offering degree program in the field.

A typical associate’s degree includes courses in Criminal Justice, Homeland Security, Bio-Terrorism and its Effects, Handling of Hazardous Materials, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Domestic Terrorism, Constitutional Law, Cyber-Terrorism, as well as Emergency Planning and Disaster Preparedness. Chosen concentrations for bachelor’s degrees will determine the agency or type of business, graduates will be deemed prepared for.

Getting a Job in Homeland Security

Federal government agencies remain the primary employers of homeland security degree graduates. These include the Transportation Security Administration, the US Capitol Police, Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the US Coast Guard, the US Customs Services, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the US Marshals Service, and the Federal Management Agency. Each of these agencies has specific hiring processes which would require applicants to undergo rigorous training. Offer of permanent employment would depend on vacancy as well as performance of candidates in tests, exams, and background checks. Steps for applying are indicated in their respective sites. Homeland Security jobs fall under four career paths namely Mission Support, Law Enforcement, Immigration and Travel Security, and Prevention and Response. That essentially is how to get a job in homeland security.