Homeland security operations in Nashville, Tennessee are administered by the Tennessee Office of Homeland Security (TOHS). Nashville and Davidson County are located in the multi-county region of District Five, as designated by TOHS. TOHS also partners with the Nashville Mayor’s Office of Emergency Management to develop and implement regionally specific homeland security programs. Both agencies are responsible for preparing the public and government organizations for any potential terrorist, public health or technological emergency. This preparation consists of public awareness campaigns, community programs, homeland security training and regular disaster simulations.
Training and Requirements for Homeland Security Professionals in Nashville, Tennessee
There are numerous homeland security jobs in Nashville, Tennessee held by professionals with backgrounds in intelligence analysis, law enforcement, information technology and public information. While the specific qualifications necessary to obtain these jobs differ significantly, many require the following:
- Graduation from an accredited college or university with significant course work in
- Public administration
- Terrorism studies
- Public health
- International relations
- Information security
- At least two years of full time experience in homeland security or emergency management
- Familiarity with Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program and other DHS programs
- U.S. citizenship
- Ability to obtain a Security Clearance
- Ability to work with private sector and government homeland security officials
Certification in Homeland Security
While the homeland security profession is a young one, there are several nationally recognized organizations that offer respected certifications. The American Board for Certification in Homeland Security offers several certification programs including:
- Certified Homeland Security Emergency Medical Response (CHSEMR)
- Certified Master Chaplain (CMC)
- Certified Response Coordinator (CRC)
The National Domestic Preparedness Coalition also offers certification programs for Certified Homeland Protection Professional (CHPP) and Certified Homeland Protection Associate (CHPA).
There are also a wide variety of colleges and universities which offer academic certifications through campus or online degree programs in the Nashville area.
Nashville Listed as a High Risk Metropolitan Area
According to the federal government, Nashville presents a high risk as a terrorist target and has been awarded a greater amount in federal grants to help protect its residents. In 2008, Nashville was added to the list of top 60 American cities that could be attractive to terrorists. This requirement for making this list includes population density, major transportation hubs, and presence of high profile facilities.
Nashville also possesses several unique features that make it a high-risk target. The metropolitan area is home to the largest Kurdish population in the country with more than 11,000. Kurds have long been one of the Middle East’s most repressed minority groups, and this group has engaged in military conflict with Iraqis and Turkish forces.
Nashville is also home to a large Somali refugee population, which found Nashville through several Catholic organizations. More than 5,000 Somalis now reside in the Nashville area. While there are few links with known terrorist organizations, Somalia has become a breeding ground for Muslim terrorists and sponsors many known training camps.