8 Online Certificates Available in Homeland Security & National Defense

Why Pursue a Homeland Security Certificate Online

Since the Twin Towers fell on 9/11, many adults in the nation have become gripped by an urgency to understand why such attacks occur — and how to prevent them from ever occurring again. As the umbrella term for security efforts to protect states against terrorist activity, "homeland security" describes... the preventative and remedial measures taken to neutralize such devastating attacks. The U.S. currently relies on a series of agencies to maintain homeland security efforts — including the National Guard, the Coast Guard, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

But homeland security is not confined to the federal level. In addition to the many federal agencies that unite to keep America safe, there is also a growing demand for private security services and products such as armored vehicles, in-home surveillance systems, bodyguards, and more. For better or worse, most Americans are on guard against threats to personal and public safety. This national sense of precaution has naturally led to a rise in certain career opportunities for qualified criminal justice professionals who have specialized knowledge of homeland security protocols and services.

If you already possess a bachelor or master- level degree, you may find that your education is never truly complete. A dizzying array of regulations, technology, and challenges (like cyber-terrorism) continues to keep the security industry on its toes. One way to access continuing education for this field is to consider earning a homeland security certificate online, or enrolling in an online degree program.

For example, some homeland security certificate online programs are designed to offer the theoretical knowledge related to terrorism sources and ideologies. Coursework may include topics in religion and fanaticism, crisis management, or specific crimes — like Internet fraud. Though different programs vary by school or concentration, curriculum usually focuses on issues such as policy, infrastructure protection, intelligence, and the important role(s) that emergency management personnel play in defending the nation from external threats. In this post-9/11 world, homeland security is an all-encompassing career track that may extend to public, private and non-profit organizations of all sizes.

Though job openings vary by career title, the new emphasis on preserving our nation's security has led to more career opportunities in federal agencies and in law enforcement. With a criminal justice certificate and other relevant credentials, students may be qualified to lead an anti-terror unit within a local police force or to work in the cyber-security department of an investigative agency. Likewise, a certificate in graduate studies, with a homeland security concentration, may be a good fit for students who have a career background in public administration, law enforcement, public safety, or emergency medical care and disaster preparedness.

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