Online Associate in Homeland Security Programs 2021

October 13, 2021

reviewed by ACO Rankings Team
Online Associate in Homeland Security Programs 2021

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Help Protect Countries with a Degree in Homeland Security

Homeland security works to prevent and protect countries from threats such as pandemics or hurricanes. Homeland security professionals prepare for possible catastrophic events and help minimize damage when they occur.

Students interested in pursuing a career in homeland security can work for state, federal, and local governments. Jobs in this field use technological, scientific, and communication skills and knowledge. Possible careers for associate degree in homeland security graduates include working in emergency management, information security, or law enforcement.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports a $74,590 median annual salary for emergency management directors. The BLS projects 4% job growth for this career in 2019-2029.

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Exploring a Degree in Homeland Security?

Q. What can you do with a degree in homeland security?

An associate degree in homeland security can lead to many career paths. Many graduates work in cybersecurity, immigration services, and information analysis for the government.

Q. How long does it take to get a degree in homeland security?

The length of time students take to get a homeland security associate degree depends on the program. Most students complete an associate degree in homeland security in two years.

Q. What do homeland security jobs pay?

Salaries for homeland security jobs vary by job type and level. Police and detectives earn a $65,170 median annual salary while transportation security screeners earn $40,580.

Q. What do you study in homeland security?

Curriculums for homeland security programs vary, but many cover terrorism, cybersecurity, and weapony. Students also learn the laws and ethics of homeland security.

Why Get a Degree in Homeland Security?

Earning an associate degree in homeland security prepares students to respond to national threats. Enrollees learn how to anticipate and prepare for disasters in a way that protects the public. Graduates from homeland security programs often pursue careers in travel security, immigration, or law enforcement.

A homeland security associate degree helps graduates enter entry-level jobs including police officers and border patrol agents. After completing their associate degree in homeland security, learners often pursue bachelor's degrees, helping them enter higher-level positions.

How Much Does a Homeland Security Degree Cost?

Associate degree in homeland security costs depend on variables including location, school, and program type. For example, tuition for a private school may cost more than a public school or community college. Many schools offer reduced tuition to in-state residents. Students who prove their residency often save money by attending a local college.

Students looking to save money may also consider attending an online homeland security program. Online learning offers convenient and flexible scheduling, allowing students to study from home and continue working without any disruption. Degree-seekers can also save both time and money on commute and gas costs.

Some homeland security programs require students to complete in-person training or an internship. The cost of transportation to and from their assigned training location may add to the education expenses. Many online programs require a technology fee in addition to tuition.


Calculating the Cost of a College Degree

Prospective students should consider all education-related expenses. Calculating the cost of tuition helps many students determine the future of their education. Assessments of costs often include cost of living, monthly income, and other expenses. Use the affordability calculator below to estimate net college costs.

Break down your current financial situation, and receive a college tuition estimate you can afford to pay.

How Much Do Homeland Security Majors Make?

Homeland security professionals often find employment with agencies or organizations including the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Many graduates with associate degrees in homeland security qualify for entry-level positions, including police officer, immigration agent, and customs officer. For entry-level positions such as police officer, the BLS reports a $65,170 median annual salary and projects a faster-than-average growth rate of 5% in 2019-2029.

Many associate degree-holders pursue bachelor's degrees in homeland security or a related field, allowing them to gain more knowledge and skills in a specific area. For example, graduates with cybersecurity knowledge can pursue careers in information analysis and protection. The BLS reports information security analysts earning $99,730 median annual salaries and projects the need for those professionals to grow 31% in 2019-2029, much faster than average.

Courses in Homeland Security

Homeland security programs teach students the skills to help nations detect potential threats and work to reduce damage that catastrophes cause. Programs typically require introductory courses in topics such as homeland security, terrorism, and disaster prepardedness. Learners can enroll in elective courses to learn about a specific facet of homeland security. Some electives include criminology, cybersecurity, and emergency management.

The following list presents courses found in many associate in homeland security programs. Not every homeland security associate degree program offers these courses. This list instead contains a sample curriculum for this program.

[tabs] [tab-item title="Disaster Preparedness"]

This course covers emergency management and disaster response. Students learn the history, theories, and concepts affiliated with emergency services. The class explores programs related to emergency management, including government planning, risk assessment, and preparedness. Looking at an overview of disaster preparedness through the perspective of civil defense and intelligence communities often plays a role in this course as well.

[/tab-item] [tab-item title="Domestic and International Terrorism"]

Learners examine various perspectives on domestic and international terrorism in this course, including an overview from historical, theoretical, and cultural approaches. The class considers cultural, psychological, religious, and political perspectives on the topic as well. Some courses explore methods of responding to terrorism.

[/tab-item] [tab-item title="Cybersecurity"]

Degree-seekers interested in the relationship between technology and the criminal justice system can take a cybersecurity course. Participants explore the impact of changing technology on crime and criminal justice practices. Other specific topics include cybercrime, the evolution of technology in relation to crime, and cyber attacks. Students also learn investigation and prevention techniques.

[/tab-item] [/tabs]

Certifications and Licensure for Homeland Security

Certifications and licenses help demonstrate a professional's experience, knowledge, and skill level in a particular subject. Many homeland security professionals obtain licensure or certification to advance their current career or pursue a specialized career. The following list provides an example of certification and licensure available to graduates with an associate in homeland security.

Professionals looking to advance their career in cybersecurity can obtain a CISSP. The CISSP credential demonstrates the knowledge necessary to manage an effective cybersecurity program. Obtaining this certification offers access to resources, networking opportunities, and education programs. Professionals must pass an exam to qualify for certification. Professionals pursuing emergency management positions should consider becoming a CEM. Requirements to receive CEM status include emergency management work history and experience. Holding a bachelor's degree in emergency management decreases the number of training hours required. Homeland security associate degree graduates can enter entry-level jobs in law enforcement. Law enforcement officers require certification specific to each state. Prior to receiving certification, professionals must complete training, an exam, and background checks.

Scholarships for Homeland Security

Many students qualify for various scholarships based on academic and career interests, as well as financial need. Learners seeking an associate degree in homeland security can apply for scholarships to help pay for tuition and additional costs. The following list includes scholarships available for students earning a homeland security associate degree.

Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association War Veterans Scholarship

Who Can Apply: AFCEA offers scholarships to active service members and honorably discharged U.S. military veterans. Qualified applicants must demonstrate undergraduate program enrollment and major in an AFCEA-related field, including cybersecurity, intelligence, or telecommunications.

Amount: $2,500

The Colonel Sully H. De Fontaine Scholarship Award

Who Can Apply: The Association of Former Intelligence Officers offers this scholarship to undergraduate students. Applicants must show interest in pursuing a career in the U.S. intelligence community. Submission requirements include a cover letter.

Amount: $1,200

CyberCorps Scholarships for Service

Who Can Apply: Students interested in working for the U.S. government in cybersecurity qualify for this scholarship. In return for the scholarship, recipients must work for the government after graduation.

Amount: $25,000

Online Associate in Homeland Security Programs 2021


Trident Technical College View School Profile Charleston, SC $5129

A public college in Charleston, South Carolina, TTC is among the largest higher education institutions in the state. At TTC, students can pursue an associate in homeland security program online. The program examines international terrorism. Other degree concepts include infrastructure protection and strategic planning for homeland security. Graduates can pursue careers in emergency management, law enforcement, and homeland security.

The online degree covers critical incident management. Enrollees learn other topics, such as border security and intelligence analysis. The 60-credit program also covers weapons of mass destruction. Students learn public health emergency preparedness and ethics in criminal justice.

TTC breaks each semester into seven-week terms. TTC is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Georgia Military College View School Profile Milledgeville, GA $6870

An independent junior college with 12 campuses across Georgia, GMC offers online degrees through its Global Online College. The college offers an online associate in homeland security degree. The program trains learners in homeland security and emergency management.

The homeland security degree covers key topics like terrorism studies, homeland security law, and risk analysis. Students learn how to evaluate homeland security threats at the local, state, and national levels. The program also introduces students to the agencies responsible for protecting national security.

Undergraduates can choose between an associate of arts or an associate of science degree. The two tracks feature different general education requirements. GMC is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Campbell University View School Profile Buies Creek, NC Unconfirmed

Campbell is a private Christian university that enrolls around 6,000 students annually. Campbell students can pursue an associate in homeland security program online. The program focuses on homeland security, emergency management, and law enforcement.

The curriculum covers political, economic, and social issues that affect homeland security. Degree-seekers learn how to identify threats and develop emergency response plans. Students can customize their degree through electives. Examples include border security, organized crime, and cybersecurity.

Incoming students must maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA on their first six credits to continue in the program. Campbell is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Keiser University-Ft Lauderdale View School Profile Fort Lauderdale, FL Unconfirmed

Keiser is a private university with campuses in Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach. The school offers an online associate in homeland security program. The program focuses on terrorism response, emergency management, and law enforcement.

Degree-seekers study the agencies that respond to terrorism. They also study terrorism prevention and responses to terrorism. The 60-credit program covers topics like cyberterrorism, bioterrorism, and emergency planning. In addition, students analyze constitutional law.

Keiser is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Hawaii Pacific University View School Profile Honolulu, HI Unconfirmed

A private university in O'ahu, HPU enrolls around 5,000 students annually. The school's online associate in homeland security degree prepares graduates for homeland security and law enforcement careers.

The program blends criminal justice, political science, and history to build a foundational understanding of homeland security. The curriculum includes training in disaster preparedness. Learners explore topics on terrorism and homeland security. Students can customize the degree with electives on topics such as violence in American society. Other electives include international law, cybersecurity, and criminology.

HPU is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior Colleges and University Commission.

Genevieve Carlton holds a Ph.D. in history from Northwestern University and earned tenure as a history professor at the University of Louisville. An award-winning historian and writer, Genevieve has published multiple scholarly articles and a book with the University of Chicago Press. She currently works as a freelance writer and consultant.

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