CHDS Master's Application Instructions

The Naval Postgraduate School Center for Homeland Defense and Security accepts applications for cohorts in two locations. The curriculum and structure of the programs are identical.

Program begins Location Application deadline Applicants notified
Fall 2017 Monterey May 1, 2017 [closed] Aug 2017
Spring 2018 Monterey Dec 1, 2017 Feb 2018
Summer 2018 National Capital Region Dec 1, 2017 Feb 2018
Fall 2018 Monterey May 1, 2018 Aug 2018

Monterey Cohorts: In-residence course sessions are held at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA. The majority of the Monterey cohort participants are state and local officials with a mixture of DHS and other federal agency leaders.

National Capital Region Cohorts: In-residence course sessions are held at Customs and Border Patrol, (CBP) Global Borders College in Harper’s Ferry, WV as part of the DHS Homeland Security Academy. The majority of the National Capital Region cohort participants are DHS and other federal agency leaders with a mixture of state and local officials.

All applications completed by the deadline will be considered for cohorts in both locations. You do not need to designate a location or date during the application process.


About the Application

Important. If you are employed by DHS or U.S. Army North, read these additional instructions before continuing.

Important. If you are an active duty military officer, read these additional instructions before continuing.

Information Required

To apply to the program, applicants must complete and submit a self-assessment, a portfolio of background and experience, and recommendations and endorsements from appropriate officials. This process is intended to insure admission only of those individuals whose background, credentials and sponsorship suggest success in the program.

Once CHDS receives the complete application packet, the Admissions Committee will consider the materials, using the following criteria:

  • Academic credentials and potential for graduate study [30% of weighted application score]
  • Experience portfolio [25% of weighted application score]
  • Future contributions to the discipline, as expressed in the self-assessment [20% of weighted application score]
  • Communication skills, as reflected in all written materials [15% of weighted application score]
  • Recommendations and commitment of support [10% of weighted application score]

Reapplying to the Program

If you have previously applied to the program, your completed application will remain on file and you do not need to do anything to be considered for admission to future cohorts. However, it is highly recommended to make changes that might substantively improve your application score. Recommended changes are:

  • Re-write one or all of your essays from a strategy/policy perspective and make the case for the criticality of your position to Homeland Security
  • Submit a standardized test score such as the LSAT, GRE or Millers Analogy Test
  • Garner additional letters of recommendation
  • Update employment information if you were promoted
  • While updating your application, you will be asked to briefly describe the magnitude and importance of the changes you made in each section. You will also be given an opportunity to articulate to the Application Committee why you feel your materials should be reassessed.

Remember, you will need to re-finalize your application after making changes.

Questions or Issues

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

If you encounter any problems while using the application, please feel free to contact our support staff either by phone or by email:

Email: CHDSMAAP@nps.edu
Phone: 831-656-3829
Fax: 831-656-2619