U.S. Department of Homeland Security Expands Graduate Education Program for Government Officials


MONTEREY, CA - The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced today that it is expanding its efforts to provide homeland security graduate education opportunities to government officials. On June 6, a group of 27 DHS, state, local and military officials will begin their homeland security graduate studies at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management’s Eastern Management Development Center in Shepherdstown, WV. This is the first to be educated as part of the newly established DHS Homeland Security Academy which is a cornerstone of the Department’s Learning and Development Strategy for its employees.

"Establishing the Homeland Security Academy is a significant achievement in the implementation of a comprehensive DHS education and training system." says George Tanner, the Chief Learning Officer for DHS. "Investing in the leadership and management capability of our employees is a top priority of the Department."

The master’s degree program will be taught and the degree awarded by the Naval Postgraduate School’s (NPS) Center for Homeland Defense and Security. NPS has been partnering with DHS and its predecessor agencies since 2002 to develop and deliver homeland security graduate education programs to local, state, tribal and federal officials who hold decision-making positions in disciplines critical to our nation’s security.

More than 150 government officials have earned master’s degrees through the NPS 18-month program which is sponsored by FEMA’s National Preparedness Directorate. The master’s program prepares leaders to develop the policies, strategies, programs and organizational arrangements to prevent and respond to terrorist attacks and other disasters and strengthen the interagency and intergovernmental relationships that homeland security requires.

"The NPS master’s program has a proven track record of building a national network of leaders who work across agency and jurisdictional lines to solve problems and protect the American people," states FEMA Administrator Dave Paulison. "We are very pleased to be able to leverage this successful program and offer more opportunity for DHS employees to learn in a setting that mirrors homeland security across the nation."

Three es per year are educated at the NPS campus in Monterey, CA. The June 6 will raise the annual number of es to four with plans for a fifth in 2008 which will also be offered in Shepherdstown, WV. The curriculum for the five es will beentical. The only difference will be the composition of the participants. All of the groups will have local, state and federal government officials from public health, law enforcement, fire, emergency management and other disciplines that make up homeland security. However, the Shepherdstown es will include more DHS and federal officials while the Monterey, CA groups include more state, local and tribal participants.

NPS master’s degree alumni serve in senior leadership positions across the nation, including:

  • Cathy Lanier, Police Chief, Washington D.C. Metro Police
  • Michael Weinlein, Chief, Special Operations, New York City Fire Department (FDNY)
  • Susan Reinertson, Regional Director, FEMA Region X (Seattle)
  • Michael McDaniel, Governor’s Homeland Security Advisor, State of Michigan
  • Harry Mayer, Regional Emergency Coordinator, US Department of Health and Human Services
  • Charley English, Director, Georgia Emergency Management Agency
  • Meredith Austin, Commander, US Coast Guard National Strike Force Coordination Center