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MSCPI Program. Program overview and structure About the curriculum MSPCI students. Goals. General information Show how MSPCI is different from other programs Expand on website information MSCPI Program. Key Contacts

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mscpi program
MSCPI Program
  • Program overview and structure
  • About the curriculum
  • MSPCI students
  • General information
  • Show how MSPCI is different from other programs
  • Expand on website information

mscpi program3
MSCPI Program

Key Contacts

  • Frank Westerlund, Professor and Acting Chair, Department of Urban Design and Planning; Acting Director, MSPCI Program
  • Karen Fishler, MSPCI Program Coordinator
  • Trisha Dvorak, Associate Director, Academic Programs, UW Educational Outreach
  • Bob Freitag, Director, Institute for Hazards Mitigation Planning & Research,
College of Architecture & Urban Planning
  • Dan Carlson, Director, Public Service Clinics, Evans School of Public Affairs
  • Barbara Endicott-Popovsky, Director, Center for Information Assurance and Cybersecurity, iSchool
program overview
Program Overview
  • Created in aftermath of 911
  • Created for officials and decision/policy makers in public and private sector, to be more effective in reducing the vulnerability of critical infrastructure systems and emergency services from natural, man made and societal hazards.
  • Fully accredited master’s program through Department of Urban Design & Planning
  • Fully online program – cohort model
program structure
Program Structure
  • Program is fully online, offered through University of Washington Extension
  • Cohort design – students start each course as a group and proceed through the program together
  • Virtual classroom provides space and technology for interaction with other students and the instructor in the form of discussion forums, debate, and collaborative projects
distance learning
Distance Learning

Benefits of Distance Learning Format:

  • Ability to build a broad professional network
  • Choice of when and where to do coursework, while progress is structured through regular assignments, discussion forums and feedback.
  • Learning resources include print materials, audio and video recordings, graphics, interactive elements, and web-based resources

Two courses per quarter for eight quarters:

  • Methods courses with case-based approaches to strategic planning
  • Content courses that provide in-depth look at vital national topics (e.g., critical infrastructure systems, emergency management, constitutional issues)
  • Capstone project that combines learning from the entire program
  • Strategic planning & systems analysis
  • Applied geospatial analysis
  • Emergency management
  • Critical infrastructure systems
    • Transportation, water, telecommunications
    • Government, banking, finance
    • Cyberterrorism, communications
    • Public health
  • Epidemiology: biological/chemical hazard mitigation
  • Constitutional issues in homeland security
  • Risk assessment and management
  • Strategic planning pracitica & capstone
sampling of planning and management skills
Sampling of Planning and Management Skills
  • Systems analysis
  • Emergency management
  • Geospatial analysis
  • Scenario planning
  • Biological and chemical hazard mitigation
  • Risk assessment & risk management
  • Naturalistic decision-making
  • Cost-benefit analysis
  • Strategic planning
  • Business continuity
  • Case study development
deep content
Deep Content

In-depth courses provide understanding of vital infrastructure systems and a case-based approach to solving problems, including:

  • Legal, constitutional and ethical issues in relation to Homeland Security
  • Health services systems and emergency response to biological and chemical hazards
  • Infrastructure systems, risk management and communication
  • Geographic Information systems analysis & spatial modeling
a unique blend
A Unique Blend
  • Only program to bring business frameworks to management of infrastructure systems (methods courses)
  • Technical learning about specific infrastructures equips students to tackle real-world problems (content courses)
  • Case study approach brings the two together with focus on decision-making (practica and Capstone courses)
mspci student profile
MSPCI Student Profile

Average Age: 37

(over total of 80 students)


  • Military 35%
  • Government 40%
  • Private Sector 25%
mspci student profile13
MSPCI Student Profile

Undergraduate Degrees:

  • Business Administration / Legal Studies 32%
  • Social Sciences 30%
  • Healthcare / Natural Sciences 15%
  • Engineering / Information Technology 15%
  • Humanities 8%
what we look for in a student
What We Look For in a Student
  • A career-related goal for which the program makes sense:
    • To move up in their existing career
    • To enter the CIP field
  • Strong academic background and good relevant work experience
  • Good work habits and the time-management skills to handle the program (it’s not easier than an on-campus program, just different)
  • Our best students are both analytical and idealistic