A Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence led by the University of Maryland

In training the next generation of scholars and practitioners, START offers its students a chance to publish their work on this blog.

Latest Intern Blog Posts

Latest Intern Blog Posts

In furtherance of its educational and professional development mission, START invites its students to write about their research experiences with the Consortium. Their work is featured on this START Student Blog. START students interested in blogging should contact Jessica Rivinius at rivinius@start.umd.edu.

The posts within this blog represent the opinions of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of START or any office or agency of the United States Government.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Response to Terrorism (START) has provided me with a great opportunity to further develop my GIS skills. Although the University of Maryland maintains the third best Geographical Sciences department in the nation, working with START in particular has helped me to understand the variety of ways in which we can use geospatial analysis.

In my time as a GIS intern, I have conducted extensive open source research on a variety of global terrorism issues. Every day presents me with a new challenge that helps me to understand and build my knowledge of how to utilize geospatial analysis. The projects GIS interns are engaged in play a big role in local government agencies’ planning strategies that help to prevent the United States from falling victim to future terrorist attacks. We investigate open source data collected from thousands of international organizations, and using GIS software are able to analyze a variety of trends... read entire post

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

In the past year, the Wisconsin Sikh Temple shooting, Hurricane Sandy and most recently the Boston bombings devastated U.S. communities and challenged U.S. responders with mitigating the unthinkable. These instances, including two intentional attacks and one natural disaster, expectedly differ when it comes to recover and rebuilding. However, what these cases do have in common is a need for effective communication. Communication is more than just two or more people talking to each other and exchanging information - communication plays an integral role in crisis response and has the potential to save lives, protect infrastructure and eventually help with community rebuilding.

The Boston bombings sparked my interest and belief that the field of communication is extremely pertinent. Previously, I viewed many crises from a political or economic standpoint based on my double major in government and politics and international business. Now, I know there is much more to the... read entire post


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