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Homeland Security: The Sworn Duty of Public Officials

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Sunday, March 6, 2016

Academics in homeland security

Universities in Protection (1 of 2)

In addition to the laboratories, DHS collaborates with several universities with centers of excellence in academia in order to secure the nation. These centers are involved in academic research and development regarding homeland protection. DHS centers of excellence bring together the nation's best experts and researchers to examine a variety of threats that include agricultural, chemical, biological, nuclear and radiological, explosive, and cyber terrorism, as well as the behavioral aspects of terrorism. The research on homeland protection varies from analyzing the economic risk of terrorism to developing methods of agrosecurity to dealing with the sociology of terrorism and bioterrorism. The prominent university-based centers of excellence are as follows:

The Homeland Security Center for Risk and Economic Analysis of Terrorism Events (CREATE)

The Homeland Security National Center for Foreign Animal and Zoonotic Disease Defense (FAZD)

The National Center for Food Protection and Defense (NCFPD)

The Center for Behavioral and Social Aspects of Terrorism and Counterterrorism (START)

The Center of Excellence for Border Security and Immigration (COE BSI)

CREATE, established in 2004 and funded by the DHS, began at the University of Southern California. Today, CREATE universities, USC, and the University of Wisconsin are partnering with two new national DHS centers of excellence at Texas A&M University and University of Minnesota. These universities are considered among the country's top engineering schools and pioneers of distance education. CREATE is dedicated to modeling and analysis in risk assessment, economic assessment, and risk management. By developing models, experts are attempting to evaluate the risks, costs, and consequences of terrorism to protect the homeland.

CREATE also provides educational and training programs in homeland security and antiterrorism procedures. The aim of these programs is to augment the number of qualified professionals in the field of homeland security in public and private organizations. The educational programs focus on developing professionals through research, certificate courses, and short-term professional courses. The training programs enhance the knowledge of these professionals and develop homeland security leaders.

Universities in Protection (2 of 2)

In addition to CREATE, the FAZD in Texas is another academic center dedicated to homeland security and protection. FAZD primarily focuses on the threats posed by zoonotic diseases, which are passed to humans from animals and diseases carried into the country by foreign animals. The center also develops new vaccines and new methods of preventing and recovering from disease outbreaks and is involved in educational programs.

Another university-based center of excellence is NCFPD. Located at the University of Minnesota, NCFPD focuses on the prevention of deliberate contamination of the country's food supply. It also contributes to the detection of such contamination. Although the focus of the center's research is towards business or information technology (IT) approaches to supply chain management, it also investigates methods to improve response to public health epidemiology.

START, located at the University of Maryland, conducts research on the sociological perspectives of domestic terrorism. The center is involved in profiling research, which looks into the usefulness of demographic indicators. It also conducts research on developing geospatial, cultural, linguistic, and political indicators. These indicators are used to predict terrorist activity at the earliest point in time.

In 2004, DHS started providing undergraduate and graduate-level scholarships and fellowships to college students.

COE BSI was established in 2007 as a collaborative effort between DHS, University of Arizona, and University of Texas at El Paso. The University of Arizona leads the research component of COE BSI and the University of Texas at El Paso leads its educational components.

COE BSI focuses on technologies such as surveillance, screening, data fusion, and situational awareness using sensors, unmanned aerial vehicles, and other technologies. COE BSI promotes research on the following:

Population dynamics

Administration of immigration, immigration policy, and enforcement of immigration laws

Operational analysis

Control and communications

Civic integration and citizenship

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