Penn State adds new offering to homeland security portfolio

A new online graduate certificate in Penn State’s homeland security program focuses on keeping hospitals and medical facilities operating during disasters and emergencies. Credit: Penn StateCreative Commons

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State is expanding its portfolio in homeland security with a new graduate-level certificate that focuses on how to ensure that hospitals and medical care facilities stay functional during emergencies and disasters.

The new graduate certificate in hospital and health system preparedness is being offered exclusively online through Penn State World Campus, and courses will be taught by faculty from the Penn State College of Medicine. The University is accepting applications for the fall 2016 semester, which starts in August.

In the coursework for the 15-credit certificate, students will learn the ways to prepare hospitals for and respond to emergencies, such as mass-casualty events, floods, earthquakes, disease outbreaks or terrorist attacks.

“Various support systems and infrastructure are critical for hospitals to maintain operation in any kind of disaster setting,” said Eugene Lengerich, professor of public health sciences and lead faculty member of the new certificate program. “The hospital is the nexus of all medical emergencies, and a community will see it that way. Hospitals must be able to respond in an effective and efficient manner to care for the ill and injured.”

Students will learn how they can assess a hospital’s vulnerabilities, develop an emergency response plan and practice it through simulating disasters.

The graduate certificate in hospital and health system preparedness is part of Penn State’s graduate program in homeland security offered online through World Campus. The 15 credits of this certificate can be applied toward the master’s degree in homeland security, public health preparedness option, for those who apply and are accepted into the program.

For more information about the homeland security portfolio, visit the Penn State World Campus website

Last Updated July 20, 2016