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M.A. in Homeland Security

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The need for knowledgeable, strategic and insightful professionals who can advance the homeland security mission of the United States has never been greater.

Homeland security is central to deterring and responding to threats to our national interests at home and abroad, including violence, cyber attacks, breaches to intelligence and threats to our critical infrastructure. Leaders in this field must bring a solid background in policy as well as effective strategies for combating terrorism and responding to other natural and man-made disasters. Rider is ready to help you enter this growing and critically important field.


About the Master of Arts (M.A.) in Homeland Security

Rider University’s 36-credit M.A. in Homeland Security offers a distinctive and multidisciplinary approach to preparing professionals for leadership roles in protecting the United States, its interests and its allies from terrorist attacks, as well as responding to natural disasters and other threats to the safety and welfare of our communities, state and nation.

By bringing together an exceptionally well-qualified and diverse faculty, our program provides broad training in the theoretical and applied nature of security studies, along with specializations in Global Security and Domestic Security. You will gain the knowledge and foundation you need to pursue private or public sector employment in the expanding area of homeland security and emergency preparedness, or further study in public policy.

Coursework is ideally scheduled for working professionals, featuring both evening and blended (in-person and online) classes.


Program Description

Rider’s graduate program in Homeland Security is a broad, theory-based program housed in the Department of Political Science. Courses draw upon the expertise of Rider faculty from various disciplines, including political science, psychology and computer information systems, as well as outside experts from nearby New York City and other major metropolitan areas. Designed with the needs of working professionals in mind, the program offers a blend of online and classroom instruction.

The M.A. in Homeland Security explores:

  • How both domestic and global factors impact issues of global and national security
  • The institutions, actors and processes supporting the security and intelligence community
  • The tools and actions governments can use to maintain security
  • The causes and consequences of threats and countermeasures

Career Outooks

  • A recent study shows a 97% increase in job postings in the New Jersey region alone for applicants with a master’s degree in Homeland Security, with employers listing the top three skills needed as criminal justice, risk assessment and crisis management.
  • The U.S. Department of Homeland Security currently employs more than 240,000 individuals. Roughly 600,000 positions are expected to open in this field through 2020.
  • In addition to the growing need for professionals in government departments and agencies, there are increasing career opportunities for security specialists in fields such as health care, insurance, finance and technology.

Admission Criteria

To be considered for admission to this program, you must hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with a minimum 2.7 cumulative grade point average (CGPA). Standardized test scores (GRE, GMAT) are not required for admission to this program.

Learn how to apply or apply today.

Apply to the M.A. in Homeland Security Program


Program Highlights

As a student in the program, you will benefit from:

  • Our mission-oriented approach focused on preparing professionals for leadership roles in homeland security
  • Foundational courses in security studies
  • Specialization options in Global Security and Domestic Security
  • A unique opportunity to explore how Israel and Northern Ireland deal with threats and consequences of terrorist acts through Rider’s relationships with higher education institutions in those countries
  • An in-depth understanding of the political and legal institutions and policy processes connected to national security
  • An ability to understand and identify connections between internal and external threats

For more program information, please contact:

Headshot of Adam McMahon
Assistant Professor of Political Science
FA 269

Adam McMahon is an Assistant Professor of Political Science and Director of the Homeland Security Master’s program. His research interests include American political institutions and American political development, U.S. foreign policy, and LGBTQ politics. He received his Ph.D. from The Graduate Center, City University of New York.

Jamie Mitchell
Director of Graduate and Continuing Studies Admission
Ciambelli Hall
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