Homeland Security Certification

Business has been a little slow, so the mailer caught my eye. “Certification, Training, and Continuing Education in HOMELAND SECURITY” was emblazed across the “Stars and stripes.” Cool. Maybe that’s just the ticket to increase the knocks on my electronic door.

The first thing I would have to do, of course, is become a member in good standing of the American College of Forensic Examiners Institute. CHA-CHING. That’s $130 for the first year or $1,750 membership for life. I don’t know. “member for life” is attractive if I live another 45 years, I’m saving over $100 a year! But, will I want to be doing this into my 90s? Oh, an additional $350 for the “Homeland Security Program” add-on to this. Total, $480. I’ll have to think about this. But, would I even qualify?

The questionnaire is next. “Application for Immediate Granted Certification in Homeland Security,” presumably with all the rights, honors, and groupies associated with same. Under experience, I start to get nervous. Military experience? Nope. Law enforcement? No, unless you count being a parent. Private security experience. Ah, good. I was CSO at TIS for a year. (Maybe less than a year, but I’ll round up.) That’s good for 15 points. You get an additional 5 points for each year of “overall private security service.” This sounds like double-counting, but I’ll grab that additional 5. I have 20 points, so far.

I was not a firefighter. Nor was I ever in the medical or health fields. But, oh boy! Under “Other Homeland Security Related Experience,” we have “cyber security.” Right there out in the open like that’s a real field. Well, I suppose in 18 or so years in computer and network security, I’ve secured some cybers. The kicker is I get to pick the number of points that should be worth. Being a modest guy, I’m saying 25 points.

I get 35 points for my masters degree, 15 points for my TICSA certification, Under training, I get nothing because I am not a “Diplomat” in the “America College of Forensic Examiners Institute. (And does it bother you that both “College” and “Institute” are used in that?) Nor have I taken or taught any “Homeland Security-related courses. But under “Knowledge” they have that phrase “or related.” I get 10 points for each presentation on “Homeland Security or related topics.” Heck, I don’t know, I bet it’s around 40 over the past 4 years. 400 points. 15 points for professional article (related topics), so let’s call it 20, for 300 points. Finally, 5 points for every conference I’ve attended on Homeland Security (none) or related topics (10-20) — 50 points. My grand total is 845 points! Wow. An “Immediate Granted Certification in Homeland Security” Level 1 only needs 100 points. For 200 or more I could get a Level 2. And 300 or more is a Level 3. Heck, I’m clearly a Level 3 then. But with 845 points I think I want another level added.

Oh, but wait. I still have to pay $480. Never mind.

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