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Wednesday, November 01, 2006

NSU grant aims to lead students to careers in security, intelligence

No one's calling it Spy 101 yet, but a $2.3 million federal grant won by Norfolk State University will go toward teaching foreign languages, history and religions to students who have their eyes on careers in national security and intelligence.

The grant program helps develop talent for the 16 federal intelligence agencies, including the FBI and the Defense Department, said John Callahan, a spokesman for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

"It ranges from... developing tools for espionage to developing key language skills," Callahan said.

"Almost every skill you can imagine is needed in the intelligence community."

Norfolk State announced Tuesday that the money will help finance classes over five years in Arabic, Chinese, Japanese and Korean, as well as Middle Eastern and Asian history and religions, and developing analytical skills. NSU students also will have opportunities for internships and other work with intelligence agencies.

Science is another target area for the grants, Callahan said. A critical need is developing intelligence-gathering systems that communicate among agencies, he said.


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