Nevada System of Higher Education Board of Regents approved two first-ever Bachelor of Applied Science degrees to be offered by Truckee Meadows Community College starting fall semester 2016. TMCC is the only college in Nevada that will offer a bachelor’s degree of applied science in logistics Operations Management Emergency Management and Homeland Security – Public Safety
“To me, the role of a community college is to be responsive, and to be responsive as quickly as possible,” said Dr. Maria Sheehan, president of TMCC, in a statement. “That’s our role, that’s our responsibility. And that’s the exciting part – when you can do something that is responsive, that’s going to address certainly jobs for the future and economic revitalization.”
Marie Murgolo-Poore, Ph.D., dean of TMCC’s Business Division agrees.
“We fulfill TMCC’s mission of lifelong learning by providing a four-year degree option for people in the community already working in this field (logistics) that haven’t been able to move up in their careers without the bachelor’s degree,” said Murgolo-Poore. “Logistics students have not had an option to continue to bachelor’s studies in Nevada, and we want to keep these talented students in the state.”
Michael Pender, managing director of Porous Power Technologies, agrees. He supports the new degree, calling the region a distribution hub with applied logistics as a major element. “It’s (logistics) what our continued success is based on,” he said. “That’s why companies come here — that’s why my original company came here back in the late ’90s, for that very reason — it’s the distribution. Distribution and logistics are key to so many industries that are here now and industries that are coming.”
Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada says that it is completing work to welcome 140 new companies to the region, 52 percent in the manufacturing sector according to its EPIC economic impact study. “Logistics is getting the right materials to the right place at the right time at the correct price, and at some level is a vital part of every company engaged in manufacturing,” said Murgolo-Poore.
Dan Oster, industrial properties specialist and senior vice president at NAI Alliance, works with companies moving to the area, and hears feedback that they’re looking for a trained, experienced workforce. “There’s an absolute tsunami coming of opportunities,” he said. “In the next five years, EDAWN has registered 51,000 jobs — those are folks who have applied for economic development and training dollars associated with coming here. The impact of that workforce surge is going to become the primary economic challenge of the next three to five years. And that’s why we need this program.”
TMCC’s existing Logistics Management Associate of Applied Science and Operations Systems are feeder programs for the new bachelor’s degree. Graduates will be prepared in areas including:
Students interested in the Bachelor of Applied Science in Emergency Management and Homeland Security will come from those already working as first responders, the military and graduates of associate degree programs in Emergency Medical Services and Fire Technology at TMCC and Emergency Management Administration at College of Southern Nevada. Those in the criminal justice programs are also eligible to pursue the degree.
“We’ll expand recruitment to the folks in public health, public works, and even those in the nursing field,” said Darryl Cleveland, director of public and occupational safety at TMCC, and a founding member of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
“Emergency Management and Homeland Security are practices, much like medicine is a practice,” said Cleveland. “In building this program, our job is not to reach for the stars in teaching the foundation, but to put students’ feet on the ground with solid training and let them reach for the star they choose.”
Aaron Kenneston, certified emergency manager at Washoe County Emergency Management and Homeland Security Program agrees.
“The field of emergency management is broad and is comprised of law enforcement, fire services, public health, emergency medical services, hospitals, public works and disaster volunteer agencies,” said Kenneston. “With this broad base, it affords the opportunity for a wide variety of students with related two-year degrees to earn this bachelor degree and advance into an equally wide variety of organizations with emergency management-related career fields.”
Kevin Schaller, Emergency Management Programs Manager at Nevada Division of Emergency Management, said that in addition to the skill sets students will gain in emergency management and natural resource protection to support local and state agencies, they will also be trained for positions in for-profit companies. “There is a growing demand in the private sector for individuals with skills that address organizational security and continuity of operations,” Schaller said. “There are a number of national and international standards pertaining to business continuity which are highly interchangeable with a number of concepts in the core curriculum in this new program.”
Upon graduation, students will be prepared to work in fields such as safety and security of critical infrastructure for government agencies or private companies such as Tesla Motors or Switch, including:
Internet connection networks
Intellectual property protection
Continuation of business in crises, such as power outages
“Today’s increasingly more complex and technology-driven world requires skill sets that were not even considered 10 or 20 years ago,” Kenneston said.
“The emergency management office of the 21 century requires a mix of people with practical experience and critical thinkers educated in our college system.”
For more information about Logistics Operations Management, call the Business Division at 775-673-7132. For Emergency Management and Homeland Security degree details, call the Emergency Medical Services Department 775-789-5555.