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Prepare for the Unexpected With a Master of Arts in Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness

Designed specifically for a world where security concerns and natural disasters are on the rise, the Online Master of Arts in Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (HSEP) from Virginia Commonwealth University’s Wilder School creates leaders equipped with the theoretical and practical knowledge to meet the latest security and preparedness challenges posed by natural disasters and terrorist threats.

Take your career to the next level with the decision-making, leadership and policymaking skills you need to grow into positions of greater responsibility — in your current field or an entirely new one.

Our 36-credit curriculum provides you with a thorough understanding of all aspects of homeland security, including emergency management, cybersecurity, intelligence and critical infrastructure protection. By the time you graduate, you will be a well-rounded expert ready to advance your career in a multitude of fields as you work to make the world a safer and better place for everyone.

A certificate

Learn to lead

Learn the principles of effective leadership and how to apply systems thinking to improve policy, planning and strategic decision-making.

A hand holding the world

Solve global challenges

Gain an understanding of the many disciplines of homeland security so you can take on roles in law enforcement, intelligence, cybersecurity, emergency management and more.

Three people

Earn a valuable degree

Earn your graduate degree from one of the leading sources of policy and leadership education in the country.

Why choose the Online Master of Arts in Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness program at VCU?

An unrivaled curriculum.

Learn to see beyond policymaking and implementation as you come to understand the larger organizational, social, political, ethical and economic aspects of disaster studies and homeland security.

Flexibility to fit your busy life.

Study when you want in a flexible online format that gives you plenty of opportunities for practical hands-on experience.

Exceptional faculty with diverse experience.

Learn from nationally recognized faculty who have real-world experience in law enforcement, fire services, the military, counterterrorism, emergency management, and intelligence.

Access to the expertise of Richmond and Washington, D.C.

Our location in Richmond, Virginia, and proximity to Washington, D.C., offer unique access to industry expertise and internship opportunities in the national epicenter of policy and action.

Start from wherever you are

HSEP students come in all ages and life stages, from all backgrounds and walks of life. Many already serve their communities as police officers, firefighters and emergency medical services personnel. Others work in criminal justice, emergency management, the military or an intelligence agency. Some work as computer network architects for business or health care.

That’s a lot of diversity. But one trait all our students have in common is the desire to help people. They want to save lives and make their communities safer. Many of our current and potential students have “boots-on-the-ground” experience and aspire to make an even greater difference from a leadership position.

Does this sound like you? Are you ready to advance your career as you work to make the world a safer and better place?

Learn more about how the HSEP program advances your career:

What to expect

Launched as the nation’s first homeland security and emergency preparedness program in 2005, HSEP is a true reflection of the Wilder School’s mission to be the premier resource for public policy expertise and social justice in public safety, governance, and economic and community development.

This online master’s program places a strong focus on experiential, practical and applied learning. You will gain hands-on experience through live discussions, presentations, simulations and breakout group sessions as you manage your coursework through our convenient online learning management system.

Find out more about the Online Master of Arts in Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness at VCU.

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