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What is Counter-terrorism?


Many people are interested in going into the burgeoning field of counter-terrorism, but what is counter-terrorism in modern America (particularly after 9/11)? The generally accepted counter-terrorism definition includes all political and military activities designed to thwart terrorist operations. Students who are interested in exciting and worthwhile careers in this growing sector should consider jobs in counter-terrorism.

There are many counter-terrorism master’s degree and even bachelor’s degree programs, but prospective students in this field should first get an overview of the modern counter-terrorism landscape. If they decide to pursue a bachelor’s or master’s in counter-terrorism at that point, they can do so with a wealth of knowledge about the field that they are going to be going into. To learn more about going from the question “what is counter-terrorism?” all the way to having a rewarding career in counter-terrorism, read on.

Counter-terrorism As A Field Of Study

Counter-terrorism has become an academic and scientific field of study in the last few decades as a result of counter-terrorism agencies and organizations becoming better structured and getting more funding. It is common for academics with a counter-terrorism master’s degree or Ph.D. in the fields of criminal justice and government policy to study various aspects of counter-terrorism operations. This leads to many jobs in counter-terrorism in the education sector. There are also many research-based openings in the field, especially analyst jobs. While many of these positions are with government agencies, quite a few are also with non-profit organizations and defense contractors. To learn more about specific jobs, see below.

Jobs In Counter-terrorism

There are three main types of employers in the field of counter-terrorism. Many people who are just beginning to research career options may think that employment opportunities can only be found within government agencies. The government certainly is one of the main employers for counter-terrorism professionals, especially those just starting their careers. However, counter-terrorism analyst jobs and more can also be found at defense contractors and at non-profit organizations, such as “think tanks”.

The private counter-terrorism sector is growing rapidly as the federal government continues to outsource more of its operations to defense contractors. Many government employees in the field are actually leaving public positions for the private sector, as these jobs often pay better. Many of the professionals that stay in government counter-terrorism positions do so because they have ambitions of becoming high-ranking officials. Non-profit organizations like the aforementioned think tanks are also employing more and more counter-terrorism professionals.

As stated before, there are many different types of counter-terrorism jobs. These jobs include working as special forces operators, analysts, researchers, and, managers or administrators. The scope of available employment in the field has broadened greatly in the last several years.

Salaries For Jobs In Counter-terrorism

Salaries for jobs in counter-terrorism can be quite lucrative, as few people have the necessary qualifications to enter the job market in the first place. If evaluated by the law of supply and demand, one could say that the demand for counter-terrorism professionals is higher than the supply, which drives up salaries. Salaries can be especially high for professionals who have a Master’s degree in Securities with a concentration in Counter-terrorism. A counterterrorism master’s degree can also help those in this field move up the ranks more quickly.

The starting salary for a government counter-terrorism analyst is over $50,000. Applicants with a master’s in counter-terrorism can expect upwards of $80,000 annually. This makes working in the counter-terrorism field one of the highest-paying jobs in government. Patriotic professionals for whom the counter-terrorism definition involves serving their country may prefer to stay within the government for long-term employment and personal commitment.

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