5 Characteristics of Homeland Security Majors

Students who want to become U.S. Department of Homeland Security professionals can major in a wide range of subjects, everything from accounting to psychology. It’s also possible to obtain a bachelor’s or a master’s degree specifically in the field of homeland security. What’s more, many schools offer certificates in related programs like disaster management or counterterrorism. Aside from their studies, people who are preparing for such careers would definitely benefit from these five traits.

1. Flexible Thinking

Unfortunately, terrorists, criminals, hackers, and others who seek to harm society are adaptable. They’re constantly seeking new methods to bypass current security measures. For that reason, homeland security majors need to be highly creative. They must be able to imagine the world from the vantage point of thieves and killers to figure out what the next steps of those nefarious individuals and groups might be.

2. Fast Reacting

Of course, it’s impossible to predict every disaster that could affect the homeland and its interests abroad. Thus, when a serious problem arises, it’s important for security officials to assess the circumstances as quickly as possible, put together a plan, and make sure that every responder knows what his or her role is, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

3. Grace Under Pressure

Naturally, this kind of work can be stressful, especially when murderers are at large or when the government believes that a terrorist plot is in its final planning stages. However, it’s critical that homeland security personnel be capable of remaining cool and levelheaded during scary situations. That way, they can better analyze evidence, reassure civilians, and spot suspicious circumstances. Indeed, lives often depend on their staying calm and collected.

4. A Clean Record

Before people can start working for the Department of Homeland Security, they have to go through an extensive background check. This department’s employees, after all, frequently review classified information. Therefore, majors should obtain and study a list of disqualifiers before they begin their coursework. If applicants have been convicted of certain crimes or if they’re in serious debt, it could be difficult or impossible for them to ever gain employment in this department.

5. An Analytical Mind

Homeland security pros routinely gather facts and data from many different sources, including intelligence agencies, medical facilities, and the general public. Consequently, they must have outstanding analytical skills. That way, they can make connections between seemingly disparate pieces of information. They also depend on their powers of reasoning for such tasks as deciding which pieces of infrastructure require strengthening, creating evacuation plans, and figuring out what hospitals should do when there’s a sudden influx of patients.

Related Resource: 5 Great Emergency Management Careers

According to the Department of Homeland Security, the field of homeland security encompasses a great variety of careers: cyberterrorism experts, border patrol agents, directors of emergency management, and so on. As technology advances, new kinds of jobs are sure to open up as well. No matter how this field develops and grows over time, though, you can be certain that the characteristics described above will still be vital for everyone who works at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.