Georgetown Dual Degree J.D. and Master of Arts in Security Studies

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JohnnyBoy

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Georgetown Dual Degree J.D. and Master of Arts in Security Studies

Postby JohnnyBoy » Tue Feb 07, 2017 8:04 pm

Has anyone ever heard of the Georgetown Dual Degree Program? I am interested in applying to the joint J.D/Master of Arts in Security Studies. I am interested in applying to Georgetown because of its location in the DC area and its ranking. I also know a current 2L at Georgetown. I wish to work in the DC area in national security law.

Originally I was unsure about where I wanted to work but after some research I decided I want to work as a lawyer for the CIA. I know that the CIA General Counsel receives hundreds of resumes every month. One way to stand out would be to have a joint J.D./Master of Arts in Security Studies. The two concentrations I am interested in are "Intelligence" and "Terrorism and Substate Violence."

Intelligence:
In this concentration, students acquire an understanding of the practical dimensions of intelligence, including the intelligence cycle, the intelligence disciplines, problems of intelligence collection and analysis, covert action, and the intelligence-policy nexus. Attention is also focused on domestic intelligence, military intelligence, and the intelligence operations and cultures of other countries. Students also consider major conceptual issues such as the appropriate role of intelligence in a democracy, issues of oversight and accountability, the intelligence budget as part of the overall defense budget, and the complexities of secrecy. In addition to helping students prepare for careers in the intelligence community, this concentration also addresses intelligence issues in the military, government agencies, or in government-related industries.


Terrorism and Substate Violence: Students in this concentration study the motivations and operations of terrorist and insurgent groups, the dynamics of civil wars, and the policies required to effectively counter these threats. Courses examine sources of terrorism, terrorist tactics, key terrorist groups like al-Qa'ida and the Lebanese Hizballah; counterinsurgency, ethnic conflict, and post-conflict stabilization missions, among other issues. Students learn to analyze the spectrum of conflicts short of war, their internal dynamics and the measures and practical responses required to resolve them. Most students pursue careers in U.S. intelligence and defense communities, those of other governments, and in international relief organizations, and consulting firms.


Which concentration would be best for working as a lawyer for the CIA in the field of counterterrorism?

Also, I would have to apply to the J.D. and the Master of Arts in Security Studies at the same time. What if I am accepted in one program but not the other? Has anyone applied to both programs before?

For reference, I am currently a junior. I plan on taking the LSAT in June. For applying to the Master of Arts in Security Studies, I would need to take the GRE test around the same time. Should I just focus on applying to law school first and when in law school take national security law courses instead of doing the work of two degrees?

cavalier1138

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Re: Georgetown Dual Degree J.D. and Master of Arts in Security Studies

Postby cavalier1138 » Tue Feb 07, 2017 9:02 pm

I'm not sure how transparent the CIA's hiring process is, but you may want to check whether anyone at the Agency actually thinks the Masters would be worth anything.

For what it's worth, I know a former GC for the CIA, and they do not have any extra degrees. They said that one of the biggest bars to entry at that office is the extreme amount of vetting required to get hired there. It's supposed to be far more in-depth and lengthy than the vetting for any other government job, to the point that most people just don't want to bother with the whole process.

JohnnyBoy

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Re: Georgetown Dual Degree J.D. and Master of Arts in Security Studies

Postby JohnnyBoy » Tue Feb 07, 2017 10:48 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:I'm not sure how transparent the CIA's hiring process is, but you may want to check whether anyone at the Agency actually thinks the Masters would be worth anything.

For what it's worth, I know a former GC for the CIA, and they do not have any extra degrees. They said that one of the biggest bars to entry at that office is the extreme amount of vetting required to get hired there. It's supposed to be far more in-depth and lengthy than the vetting for any other government job, to the point that most people just don't want to bother with the whole process.



Thanks for the reply cavalier1138. I do not know anyone who works at the CIA but I do somewhat know a contractor who works in national security. The CIA has an Office of Public Affairs but I doubt that they could or would answer my question.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/express/ ... 6639fccb74

The 175 students attend classes part-time and keep their day jobs. Stout says about a third work on Capitol Hill, a third work in the private sector, and a third work in the executive branch at agencies like the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI and the CIA.

This refers to the Masters program at Johns Hopkins but I assume that it is easier to get a job at the DHS or FBI than getting a job at the CIA.

Also, would the CIA care if I had an OK undergraduate GPA but a great law school GPA?

cavalier1138

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Re: Georgetown Dual Degree J.D. and Master of Arts in Security Studies

Postby cavalier1138 » Wed Feb 08, 2017 7:12 am

That article looks like a Georgetown press release. I'm sure the program's great, but you need to get real information about whether they think their lawyers need it.

The big joke here is that you're trying to get information from the CIA, but I don't think it's as hard as you're trying to make it. Former attorneys for the OGC are allowed to say that they worked there, and at least the one I know is happy to talk about anything not directly involving state secrets. According to their careers page, the sort of work they do runs the whole gamut, so having a masters degree in a relatively new discipline may not really help that much.

In general, be skeptical of dual-degree programs. I wouldn't recommend going for this unless you have some kind of firm data that it actually improves your chances, not just the school's assurances that you'll look like a more attractive applicant.

CanadianWolf

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Re: Georgetown Dual Degree J.D. and Master of Arts in Security Studies

Postby CanadianWolf » Wed Feb 08, 2017 7:59 am

Agree that this appears to be a press release rather than a legitimate inquiry. Syracuse University has a similar program. Not sure about their placement record.

I know several joint degree holders who have done well in joining law firms & Big 4 with a practice area related to their respective masters degree (environmental & finance/accounting & foreign language, for example).

JohnnyBoy

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Re: Georgetown Dual Degree J.D. and Master of Arts in Security Studies

Postby JohnnyBoy » Thu Feb 09, 2017 9:15 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:That article looks like a Georgetown press release. I'm sure the program's great, but you need to get real information about whether they think their lawyers need it.

The big joke here is that you're trying to get information from the CIA, but I don't think it's as hard as you're trying to make it. Former attorneys for the OGC are allowed to say that they worked there, and at least the one I know is happy to talk about anything not directly involving state secrets. According to their careers page, the sort of work they do runs the whole gamut, so having a masters degree in a relatively new discipline may not really help that much.

In general, be skeptical of dual-degree programs. I wouldn't recommend going for this unless you have some kind of firm data that it actually improves your chances, not just the school's assurances that you'll look like a more attractive applicant.


I will be reading books from the CIA's recommended book list. Perhaps I will find some useful names. Thanks for the advice.

JohnnyBoy

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Re: Georgetown Dual Degree J.D. and Master of Arts in Security Studies

Postby JohnnyBoy » Thu Feb 09, 2017 9:15 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:That article looks like a Georgetown press release. I'm sure the program's great, but you need to get real information about whether they think their lawyers need it.

The big joke here is that you're trying to get information from the CIA, but I don't think it's as hard as you're trying to make it. Former attorneys for the OGC are allowed to say that they worked there, and at least the one I know is happy to talk about anything not directly involving state secrets. According to their careers page, the sort of work they do runs the whole gamut, so having a masters degree in a relatively new discipline may not really help that much.

In general, be skeptical of dual-degree programs. I wouldn't recommend going for this unless you have some kind of firm data that it actually improves your chances, not just the school's assurances that you'll look like a more attractive applicant.


I will be reading books from the CIA's recommended book list. Perhaps I will find some useful names. Thanks for the advice.

JohnnyBoy

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Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Feb 07, 2017 7:46 pm

Re: Georgetown Dual Degree J.D. and Master of Arts in Security Studies

Postby JohnnyBoy » Thu Feb 09, 2017 9:17 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:Agree that this appears to be a press release rather than a legitimate inquiry. Syracuse University has a similar program. Not sure about their placement record.

I know several joint degree holders who have done well in joining law firms & Big 4 with a practice area related to their respective masters degree (environmental & finance/accounting & foreign language, for example).



I researched the Syracuse program you mentioned. They have a master's program in forensics and a master's program in cybersecurity. The article may be a press release but it does contain useful information. Do you think Georgetown would release its official statistics on where graduates work after graduation?



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