National Security Decision Making: Theory and Practice
As the senior leaders of tomorrow, the Fellows will need a firm grasp on the past, present, and future of important issues impacting the defense sector. Future leaders must understand the impetus behind the decisions of the past and what leaders now are considering for issues of the future. The national security courses will put these considerations and issues into context as well as oblige the students to think strategically and critically about these issues.
Sample Topics: From Articles of Confederation to the Constitution; U.S. National Security Apparatus; Ethics in the U.S. Armed Forces
Leaders must be able to effectively communicate their thoughts, ideas, and directives not only to peers, bosses, and employees within their organization, but to those audiences external to their organization (including the media, collaborating organizations, and other unrelated, but interested, audiences). Throughout the SSFP, our faculty will provide the tools and practices necessary to communicate effectively within each of those environments.
Sample Topics: Media Relations & Crisis Communications; Negotiations; Storytelling
Innovation and Strategy
As the environment continually shifts and changes, leaders need to be able to adapt and alter their organizations to face new challenges, whether these challenges are a new type of enemy, budgetary fluctuation, or technological advance. The SSFP business faculty, drawn mostly from UNC’s Kenan-Flager Business School will challenge students to think critically, creatively, and innovatively about their organizations and management processes.
Sample Topics: Anticipating Scenarios; Critical Decision Making; Strategic Innovation
Strategic View of the US Government (non-DoD)
As the U.S. military and defense sector continue to expand beyond traditional roles to nation building and disaster response, an understanding of the organizations that will be working with the military and defense sector on these tasks is imperative. SSFP courses explain the roles, overlaps, and intricacies of many of these organizations.
Sample Topics: The Art of Diplomacy; Intelligence Reform; Civil-Military Relations
Strategic Global Outlook
As long as the United States continues to have a global presence, it will be vital for leaders in the military and defense sector to have a current and clear comprehension of international affairs. Crucially, an understanding of the global environment will allow future leaders to better predict where the next conflict, disaster, or problem state will emerge and allow them to better prepare the nation’s defense for these potential conflicts and missions.
Sample Topics: U.S. Foreign Policy; Global Finance and International Security
Capstone Team Project
In addition to graduate-level course work, the Fellows will engage in a capstone-applied learning project with their classmates. The goal of this team project is to allow the students to collaborate and work through a difficult issue currently affecting the U.S. defense sector and will continue to affect this realm long term. The final papers and presentations will be briefed to a panel that will include several of these senior leaders.
UNC-IDB SSFP is designed for students with the following qualifications and qualities:
- A Bachelor’s degree
- O-3 to O-4 Officers, W-3 to W-4 Warrant Officers, and E-7 to E-9 Non-Commissioned Officers from all military services (across branches); GS-10 to GS-14 Government Civilians; and Private Sector Managers with equivalent experience
- An intense desire to advance to greater levels of responsibility
- The propensity to learn and have a desire to expand his or her perspective as a young professional
- A candidate with high-potential and a strong desire to make an impact
If you fit this profile and are interested in attending a future offering of the UNC-IDB Strategic Studies Fellows Program, please contact Zebrina Warner or Jaclyn Young.
SSFP faculty members and speakers are affiliated with some of the nation’s top universities such as the University of North Carolina system and Duke University, along with the private sector, U.S. Military and Government. The two core National Security instructors, Professor David Schanzer and Professor Tim Nichols, are renowned experts in the field of National Security who built a robust curriculum when the SSFP began in 2012.
The Lead Team Project Advisors, Dr. Hugh O’Neill of UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School and Dr. Navin Bapat of the UNC Department of Political Science, serve as the Fellows’ advisor and mentor as the develop their course-long Capstone team projects. O’Neill and Bapat provide critical strategic tools and lessons for the Fellows to apply to their research methods and overall project.
Outside of the core faculty, the IDB utilizes its vast academic network and partnerships to identify the appropriate faculty members to complement the SSFP course themes. These faculty members are esteemed academic and professional leaders who wrote parts of the National Security Strategy, chaired innovation projects in Silicon Valley, and served as a U.S. Ambassador in the UAE. They draw upon their experiences during their sessions and present their insights to the Fellows.
IDB collaborates with two nationally recognized universities and three centers to develop and deliver the UNC-IDB SSFP:
- The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-Chapel Hill) Peace, War, and Defense Curriculum
- Duke University Sanford School of Public Policy
- IDB’s Center for Stabilization and Economic Reconstruction (CSER)
- Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security (TCTHS)
- Triangle Institute for Security Studies (TISS)
Tuition & Credits:
Tuition (Includes lodging, breakfast and lunch during weekdays with the exception of July 4th): Call IDB for pricing at 919-969-8008.
Graduates receive a joint certificate from IDB and UNC’s Peace War and Defense curriculum, along with 2.0 credit hours from UNC-Chapel Hill.
Government Sponsored Students
Government sponsored students are either centrally funded or funded by their units. The sponsoring entity normally selects the students and submits an application package to be approved by the IDB.
Private Sector or Self-Selected Students
If you are interested in sponsoring yourself, please contact the program office for more information.
Mike Bogdahn (For enrollment information)
Senior Account Manager
Institute for Defense & Business
Zebrina Warner (For program questions)
Institute for Defense & Business