DHS Announces New Center of Excellence Grant Opportunity

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Office of Academic Engagement

News and Updates - July 2016

DHS Looks to Expand Centers of Excellence Program with New Grant Opportunity

Colleges and universities play a critical role in building a more resilient nation and supporting the homeland security enterprise. From innovative research and technologies to training the students of today to become the next generation of homeland security leaders, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) benefits from the intellectual power and expertise colleges and universities provide. DHS’s Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) helps harness some of these benefits through its Centers of Excellence Program (COE).

Managed by S&T’s Office of University Programs, the COE network is an extended consortium of hundreds of colleges and universities conducting groundbreaking research to address homeland security challenges. The COEs work closely with the homeland security community to develop customer-driven, innovative tools and technologies to solve real-world challenges. COE partners include academic institutions; industry; national laboratories; DHS operational components; S&T divisions; other federal agencies; state, local, tribal and territorial homeland security agencies; and first responders.

These partners work in concert to develop critical technologies and analyses to secure the nation. Training and professional education programs through the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Emergency Management Institute (EMI) and Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP) and other training partners.

Currently, 11 Centers of Excellence are operating at colleges and universities across the United States. With specializations ranging from Coastal Resilience at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill; to Food Protection and Defense at the University of Minnesota; to Zoonotic and Animal Disease Defense at Texas A&M University, these unique programs offer students the ability to gain critical insights into the future of homeland security.

On June 1, S&T announced a $40 million funding opportunity for an institution to lead a new COE focused on Criminal Investigations and Network Analysis (CINA).

All U.S. colleges and universities are eligible to submit their proposals to receive the grant. DHS is also looking to find institutions willing to partner with the lead institution in support of the new Center’s activities. The deadline for proposal submissions is September 1, 2016. DHS intends to fund this new COE for 10 years for a total of approximately $40 million through a cooperative agreement.

Further information regarding the notice of funding opportunities for the Center for Criminal Investigations lead institution and partner institution are available at grants.gov.

Be sure to look out for OAE’s monthly Academic Engagement News and Announcements Update.

The monthly Academic Engagement Update is a product of the Office of Academic Engagement. The office supports DHS’s mission by building, improving and leveraging relationships with the academic community. For more information, visit http://www.dhs.gov/topic/academic-engagement.