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MSU To Begin Security Studies Program With Federal Support

Morgan State University is one of two institutions of higher education to have been selected by the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) to receive federal funds to begin degree programs in National Security Studies. Maryland U.S. Senators Barbara Mikulski and Benjamin Cardin announced the grants from the Intelligence Community Centers of Academic Excellence. Morgan will receive $1.8 million to develop highly skilled experts who will help defend the nation’s security interests.

Along with MSU, the University of South Florida was also selected for an award. Under provisions of its five-year grant, Morgan will establish a consortium of historically black colleges and universities in Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina to do research in human terrain systems and bio-systems with specific applications to South Asian countries such as Afghanistan, India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan.

“We are proud to work with our collaborative partners to educate students in security studies and grateful to Senators Mikulski and Cardin for their assistance in helping bring Morgan to the attention of the Intelligence Community Centers of Academic Excellence,” says Morgan President David Wilson. “With programs now in National Security Studies, our students are going to be even better prepared to lead the world!

“This partnership between the intelligence community and Morgan, one of Maryland’s and the nation’s great historically black institutions, will lead to a safer country, stronger economy and will help to build an unparalleled national security and cyber workforce here in Maryland,” said Senator Mikulski, a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. “These federal dollars are crucial to developing a strong, educated and capable workforce,” she said.

The National Security Studies program aims to promote curricula at academic institutions with Intelligence Community (IC) core mission skills such as international relations, foreign language and cultural immersion, scientific and technical programs of study, including cyber security. Foreign language and cultural fluency, for example, are needed in the IC to better understand cultural indicators that shape world events and U.S. national security strategies.

“This program offers a tremendous opportunity for Morgan and its partners to engage students on a global level by integrating language, culture and technical capabilities across many disciplines,” says Dr. Joseph Whittaker, dean of Morgan’s School of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences. “This will be critical as the State of Maryland positions itself to become the central axis of the nation’s cyber-security and cyber-infrastructure community, similar to California’s Silicon Valley branding itself as the “technology Mecca” of the U.S,” Whittaker added.

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Morgan State University, founded in 1867, is a Carnegie classified doctoral research institution offering more than 60 academic programs leading to bachelor’s degrees as well as programs at the master’s and doctoral levels. As Maryland’s public urban university, Morgan serves a multi-ethnic and multi-racial student body and seeks to ensure that the doors of higher education are opened as wide as possible to as many as possible. For more information on Morgan State University, visit

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