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New opportunities through counterterrorism studies

New Opportunities Through Counterterrorism Studies

The threat of terrorism has been a part of the global strategic security environment for decades. New developments in the pervasiveness of terrorist activity — notably the global jihadist movement headed by al-Qaida — heighten the need for focused, comprehensive education requirements and offerings in counterterrorism studies.

Counterterrorism career opportunities have expanded in prevalence and importance after 9/11 and the subsequent terrorist attacks in Bali, Madrid, and London.

The need for counterterrorism studies has never been greater and the demand for quality counterterrorism education is likely to continue to grow. While there are many different types of counterterrorism jobs available across all levels of government and even private industry, there are few places that offer degrees in counterterrorism at the four-year or master’s level.

What is Counterterrorism Studies? Counterterrorism studies seek to educate those interested in understanding, and eventually offsetting, the use of terrorism tactics in global warfare. Unlike traditional acts of violence, terrorists use asymmetric methods to achieve their objectives.

What Counterterrorism Professionals Need to Know Counterterrorism professionals need to understand terrorist group dynamics, strategy, targeting, and tactics as well as how policies are formulated, developed and implemented to counter terrorist planning and operations. Senior-level analysts need to not only possess a deep knowledge of terrorism, but also how to brief key decisionmakers about emerging risks and threats posed by terrorist activity.

What types of career opportunities are available for students of Counterterrorism Studies? No matter what your individual counterterrorism career goals may be, there are literally thousands of jobs in this growing strategic security sector available today throughout the United States and throughout the world.

Across all counterterrorism jobs are common requirements for individuals that possess a minimum of a four-year degree with extensive, direct counterterrorism experience or an advanced degree in a highly-related field (like terrorism or intelligence studies). In all cases, a master’s degree is desirable and for many counterterrorism jobs, is a minimum qualification.

Links to a Few of the Top Counterterrorism Employers — Department of Homeland Security, www.dhs.gov/dhspublic/display?theme=40 — Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), www.cia.gov/employment/jobs/counter_terrorism_analyst.html — Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), https://www.fbijobs.com/joblist.asp — Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) — Lockheed Martin, www.lockheedmartin.com/wms/findPage.do?dsp=fec&ci=6&sc=400 — Booz Allen Hamilton, www.boozallen.com/ — Gerard Group International LLC, www.gerardgroup.com/home.php — Interpol, www.interpol.int/Public/Icpo/Recruitment/default.asp. — Arnold and Porter, LLP, www.arnoldporter.com/practice.cfm?practice_id=40 — Patton Boggs, LLP, www.pattonboggs.com/services/

To fully understand and effectively counter terrorist activity, you need a highly-specialized education in terrorism studies. In order to meet this challenge you need to have an education that mixes theory with practical classes in order to give students the tools they need to be successful throughout their careers.

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