Homeland security isn’t just a color-coded risk chart at a press conference in Washington, D.C.
In the nearly 13 years since the terrorist attacks of 9/11, it’s increasingly permeated Americans’ daily lives, and everyone from local cops to sports stadium managers need to have a background in protecting the country, said Joe Anderson, an instructor at Salt Lake Community College.
Anderson, a former assistant U.S. attorney, is the architect of a new associate’s degree program in Homeland Security/Emergency Management. Set to begin in the fall, it’s the only program of its kind in the Intermountain West aside from a graduate degree offered in Las Vegas.
"Terrorism is with us, and it apparently isn’t going away," Anderson said. "We haven’t figured out exactly how to deal with it yet."
And that means there’s demand for workers familiar with the territory. Some 87,000 agencies work with the Department of Homeland Security, and Department of Labor statistics indicate that demand for emergency management workers could increase by as much as 36 percent by 2018. The median salary for the industry in Utah is $24 an hour.