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Student and Faculty Profiles

VCU launched the nation’s first Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (HSEP) program in 2005, and we’ve been helping students become innovative leaders in the field ever since. Below, you’ll discover stories of how our online master’s degree has empowered students to thrive in their careers and make a measured impact in the communities they serve.


Police officer in sunglasses holding a radio.

James “Matt” Leicester

Emergency Management Coordinator for Chesapeake Regional Health Care

"While my experiences as a full-time professional had given me a certain breadth of understanding about emergency management, the depth of knowledge I’ve gained from the program has given me tremendous confidence."

People with serious expressions and holding pens and papers share information

Kabrina Tippett

Occupational Safety Specialist

“The faculty are amazing here. All of my professors have gone above and beyond in supporting and encouraging me. And those relationships don’t end when a class ends. … That’s special.”

Counter terrorism officers in parade crowd are on alert for domestic terrorism threats.

Kylie Stottlemyer

Cyber & Critical Infrastructure Intelligence Analyst

“The coursework here has really strengthened my ability to network, my attention to detail and my overall communication skills.”

Disaster preparedness professionals help at scene.

Darshan Parikh

Deputy Emergency Management Coordinator, Chesterfield County

“Not a week goes by that I don’t talk with a few of the graduates from my program by text. It’s great to know that if I need a favor or to ask advice, I have people that I can talk to.”

Professional headshot of student Farjan Billah

Farjan Billah

Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness student

A Wilder School Spotlight on Farjan Billah who went from academic suspension as a non-degree seeking student to being admitted fully as a degree-seeking student, eventually making the Dean's List.

Professional headshot of student Hezha Barzani

Hezha Barzani

Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness student

Hezha Barzani, a VCU senior, has a unique perspective on the Afghanistan withdrawal.

Professional headshot of student Jenifer Nunez

Jenifer Nunez

Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness student

How a homeland security major ended up contributing to oral health research.

Disaster preparedness professionals help at scene.

Shola Kayode

Night Shift Patrol Sergeant for VCU Police

“Students benefit from hands-on connections and real-world experience of the faculty. You’re never just learning from a textbook here.”


Professional headshot of student Benjamin Young

Benjamin Young

Assistant Professor of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness

Benjamin Young explores North Korea’s history and evolving threats.

Professional headshot of student David Webber

David Webber

Assistant Professor and Assistant Chair of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness

David Webber explains what the motivations of terrorists teach us about Afghanistan.

Marching in the footsteps of history up the slave trail, students are able to trace a connection to Richmond’s past.

Maureen Moslow-Benway

Assistant Professor and Program Chair of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness

Maureen Moslow-Benway examines the effects of human trafficking.

Join us on your journey to a career of impact.