The US Intelligence Community has designated Syracuse University as one of eight national Intelligence Community Centers for Academic Excellence (ICCAE), with a funding award of $1.5 million over five years. Established in 2005 by Congress, the ICCAE program is designed to increase the number of culturally and ethnically diverse, multi-disciplinary professionals in the intelligence community. Syracuse University is one of only eight universities nationwide—including the University of Arizona, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and University of Southern California—and only one of two private universities selected.
In its proposal, Syracuse University will lead a consortium of schools—known as the Partnership for Educational Results/Syracuse University Adaptive, Diverse and Ethical Intelligence Community Professionals (PER/SUADE)—to recruit and educate talented, diverse students interested in public service careers in the intelligence field. The consortium’s partner schools include Norfolk State University, a historically black university; The Grove School of Engineering at The City College of New York and other institutions.
This multi-faceted recruitment and education initiative leverages the University’s leadership and strengths in a wide range of security-related disciplines, cutting across STEM, public affairs, law, forensics, military affairs, disability studies, and language and cultural studies. Building dynamic and sustained partnerships with the consortium partners will enable PER/SUADE to share complementary strengths and attract diverse students, like military veterans, as well as historically underrepresented students, including women; ethnically, culturally and religiously diverse students; and students with disabilities.
“It is an honor for Syracuse University to be selected for this auspicious designation,” says Vice Chancellor and Provost Michele Wheatly. “This recognition acknowledges the tremendous research of faculty members engaged in these interdisciplinary fields and the strength of our academic enterprises committed to supporting a diverse set of scholars in the classroom and the field.”
Affiliated faculty members will support PER/SUADE’s mission by developing an intelligence-related curriculum, including major and minor degree options and a certificate program; professional development and faculty research opportunities; and culturally immersive experiences.
“This significant designation as an academic center of excellence and funding demonstrate scholarship and the impact of the University’s broadening research portfolio,” says Vice President of Research John Liu. “Syracuse University has a long history and commitment to excellence in research and education in public service and to the highly regarded values of diversity and ethics. Our faculty across various interdisciplinary fields are well positioned to further advance scholarship and education in global understanding and elevate our work in educating under-resourced students with diverse experiences and backgrounds.”
The program will provide students interested in pursuing a career in the area of intelligence with a strong academic foundation and experiences that will increase their success in finding a career in any of the US intelligence agencies. Along with their studies, ICCAE students will have opportunities to study abroad at more than 45 locations, with language instruction, cultural immersion and regional studies, and to participate in seminars, career talks, field trips and conferences.
“The goal of national security is to defend liberty as well as our physical security,” says Hon. James E. Baker, Co-Principal Investigator, Professor of Law, Professor of Public Administration, and Director of the Institute for National Security and Counterterrorism (INSCT). “This program will benefit our nation and all who live in it by producing a diverse group of adaptive and insightful intelligence professionals who hold an unwavering commitment to public service with a keen understanding of ethics and the rule of law. These values and virtues were embodied in the life of Judge Jack Downey [a US intelligence officer who was captured and detained in Chinese prisons during and after the Korean War], whose service is recognized in the form of the Downey Fellowship for academically excellent students.”
The partnership consortium will take a three-part approach to address current educational needs and challenges for the intelligence community. The approach recognizes that emerging professionals need to adapt to the demands of highly dynamic and changing environments; acknowledges that diverse perspectives and experiences enhance a person’s ability to analyze situations; and recognizes that the next generation of the best security and intelligence professionals will put ethics and the rule of law at the forefront of their analysis and practice.
“At its heart this effort aims to build a diverse workforce for the intelligence community that represents the full spectrum of our country’s population—reflected ethnically and culturally, and by gender, through sustainable national security education programs that will complement students’ primary areas of study,” says Vice Admiral Robert Murrett (Ret.), Principal Investigator, Maxwell School Professor of Practice, and Deputy Director of INSCT. “It will leverage contributions from virtually all the schools and colleges at Syracuse University, and provide additional career opportunities for our students.”