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Degree Overview: Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree in Homeland Security

Majors Overview March 3, 2015

Get information about a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree program in Homeland Security and its coursework, career choices, continuing education choices, and job and wage outlook.

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree Programs in Homeland Security

Schools typically offer degree programs in homeland security as a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Homeland Security. In several bachelor’s degree programs in homeland, a multi-tiered approach is used, incorporating theories of emergency care, social policy, criminal justice, and business management.

Students enrolled in these programs are taught about preparing communities for potential disasters, implementing prevention strategies, and creating response protocols for different emergencies. The students examine emergency procedures; these include the establishment of contacts with social service providers, providing crisis victims with supplies, and the transporting of survivors to safety.

Students learn about current laws governing homeland security agencies. The focus of some degree programs is on implementing preventative strategies, whereas direct emergency management dominates the focus of other programs. A high school diploma or its equivalent is needed to apply to a bachelor’s degree program.

Coursework

Both local and global topic areas are available in the coursework; these may relate to ensuring the safety of communities during various hazards, including acts of terrorism and natural disasters, among others.

Students can use electives in this major to gain the training necessary for pursuing specific career options, including hazardous materials management or port security. Core coursework may include topic areas such as:

•Homeland protection
•Politics and security policies
•Emergency planning
•Legal rights and security
•Response and recovery tactics
•Emergency preparedness
•Terrorism
•Disaster management
•Homeland security administration

Career Choices

Those who complete a bachelor’s degree program may seek government security careers at the local, state, and federal levels. They may also seek jobs in the non-profit and private sectors, such as community safety organizations, private security firms, and international businesses. They may choose from career options such as the following:

•Emergency management specialist
•Occupational health and safety specialist
•Secret service agent
•Immigration inspector
•Border patrol agent

Continuing Education Choices

Individuals who wish to pursue law enforcement careers may need to complete additional training; such training could be in the form of federal law enforcement training or training imparted at police academies (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics).

With changes effected over time in the practices, technologies, and laws related to homeland security and emergency management, industry professionals can stay abreast of new trends through periodic attendance of training seminars and continuing education. Graduates from the bachelor’s degree program can also pursue continuing education by earning a master’s degree in homeland security.

Job and Wage Outlook

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a below-average job growth rate of 5% has been predicted for police and sheriff’s patrol officers. A slightly better average growth is expected to be enjoyed by emergency management directors over the same period (BLS). In 2012, police and sheriff’s patrol officers, including border patrol agents, brought home an average annual wage of $56,980, while emergency management directors banked $59,770.

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