Metropolitan College of New York Military Friendly School
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The MPA in Emergency and Disaster Management

Course Offerings

Over 16 months, our graduate students explore the complex world of emergency and disaster management issues and learn the critical-thinking and decision-making skills necessary to support and supervise comprehensive, integrated and effective management in the event of natural, system-wide, or human-induced crisis.

Through assessment of a broad range of modern disasters and complex emergency situations, the program provides students with a working knowledge of needs, preparedness, service delivery systems, impact on communities, decision-making and ethics.

The MPA in Emergency and Disaster Management Course Offerings

Semester 1 : Semester 2 : Semester 3 : Semester 4 :
Purpose: Impact of Disaster on Cultures and Communities (2 credits) Purpose: Identification of Organizational Disaster Needs/Field Experience (5 credits) Purpose: Initiating and Managing a Disaster Recovery Plan/Field Experience (5 credits) Purpose: Long Range Planning for Disaster Management/Field Experience (5 credits)
  Microsoft Office Suite Community Emergency Response Training Field Trip
Evaluating Service Delivery Systems (2 credits) Systematic Approaches to Management (2 credits) Individual and Collective Responses to Disaster (2 credits) Public Safety in the 21st Century (2 credits)
Research and Analysis Methods in Disaster Management (2 credits) Organizational and Municipal Continuity Planning (2 credits) Economic and Social Trends and the Organization of Services (2 credits) The Federal Government's Management of Natural and Man Made Disasters (2 credits)
Values and Ethics for Administrative Decision Making (2 credits) Public Health Systems and Preparedness (2 credits) Private Sector Emergency Management (2 credits) Topics in Emergency Management (2 credits)
Economics of Hazards and Disasters (2 credits)   Information Technology in Disaster Planning (2 credits)  

Semester 1

Impact of Disaster on Cultures and Communities (MPA 511 SEL) (2 credits)
This course is designed to equip the student with an overview introduction to emergency management, focusing on the effects of disasters on different populations, and the current disaster response measures in place. The class is structured on the lifecycle of emergency management: mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery. Each student is expected to develop a basic understanding of these concepts and the current issues in emergency management, as well as gain insight into the public and private sector methods of managing crisis.
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Evaluating Service Delivery Systems (MPA 512 SYS) (2 credits)
The role and function of the emergency manager and the nature of the decision-making process are inevitably tied to organizational structure and philosophy. If emergency manager expect to assess, shape, design, and direct programs effectively, it is essential that they become knowledgeable about the nature of organizations and how organizations behave when influenced by internal and external forces. The class will focus on the study of models of management, including scientific management, public administration, and human relations. Students will examine the various models of management, carry out a comparative analysis of these needs, and use them as a way of understanding the philosophical, organizational, and managerial principles that guide them.
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Research and Analysis Methods in Disaster Management (MPA 511 SKI) (2 credits)
The course will give students the tools to research emergency and disaster management problems as diverse as the social aspects of hurricane evacuation, behavior change in employee emergency preparedness programs, and applying a cost dimension to traditional risk assessment. Students will also learn to apply quantitative and qualitative research methods from a range of disciplines, such as sociology, psychology, political science, public administration, and criminal justice to contemporary and traditional emergency management problems.
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Values and Ethics for Administrative Decision Making (MPA 511 VAL) (2 credits)
The aim of the class for the Values and Ethics Dimension is to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the major traditions of ethical reflection and the implications for the emergency manager. As administrators and professionals, students must, as a practical matter, make assumptions about what ethical standards should govern the management of staff, relationships in the organization as a whole, and work with citizens in crisis. In the Values and Ethics Dimension class, students will be challenged to clarify and reflect critically on their values and ethical standards.
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Economics of Hazards and Disasters (MPA 511 SYS) (2 credits)
This course provides a comprehensive overview of the economic aspects of hazards and disasters through a review of the concepts, analytical tools and policies that exist to aid emergency managers before, during and after emergencies. The course commences with an overview of present-day emergency management, and proceeds to the concepts of business continuity, vulnerability analysis, risk management and the development of a Business Area Impact Analysis (BAIA). From there, students will review the economic costs of terrorism, and the underlying perceptions associated with the notion of risk and learn ways to communicate risks effectively with stakeholders and the public. The first half of the course concludes with an examination of business contingency planning, its vices and virtues.

Building on that foundation, the second half of the semester begins with an introduction to the increasingly important role of public-private relationships in emergency management and moves to the heavily debated topic of price controls during emergency and disaster events. Students will then review the rights of property owners from the perspective of those either indirectly or directly affected, examine the roles of employees, employers and the government and conclude with am investigation into the impacts of natural disasters.
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Semester 2

Identification of Organizational Disaster Needs / Field Experience (MPA 522 PCA/ MPA 522 FLD) (3 credits, 2 credits for field)
This Constructive Action course is designed to provide students with an overview of business continuity/emergency operations planning for public, non-profit, and private organizations. Students will review the "tool belt" of current day Emergency Management, the Microsoft Office Suite, Microsoft Project, and ARC/GIS. Students will apply the Disaster Recovery Institute's first 5 Professional Practices of Business Continuity to create a Business Continuity Plan for a local business. Students will also complete the FEMA Emergency Management Professional Development Series. The process is designed to be collaborative, to encourage teamwork, and to give students a real-world experience in developing a plan. In later semesters, students will implement and assess the plan.
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Systematic Approaches to Management (MPA 522 SYS) (2 credits)
The Systems Dimension class has been designed to introduce participants to the dynamics of management practice and to provide them with a wide variety of management techniques available to them as emergency management professionals. Surveying state-of-the-art management practices, this course will help participants gain an integrated picture of the management process as well as the skills and specific tools required for effecting organizational change, increasing managerial and service efficiency, implementing program improvements and establishing systems for program evaluation. This course will also focus on the principles of Project Management, specifically Project Life Cycle, and the management of Project Scope, Integration, Time, Cost, Communications, Risk, and Procurement, with the goal of readying students for Project Management certification.
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Organizational and Municipal Continuity Planning (MPA 521 SKI) (2 credits)
This course examines the history of both disaster preparedness research and planning, and culminates with a review of contemporary disaster planning processes and how they can be applied to real-world experiences via the examination of meaningful and purposeful case studies. We begin with a review of the literature that comprises the foundations of disaster preparedness research, and progress through the topics of organizational and governmental considerations in planning and on to a discussion of future trends in these fields.

From there, students will examine the planning process that includes hazard analysis procedures (including vulnerability & risk assessments), emergency operations plan (EOP) development, and plan testing and maintenance. We will then delve into the often-overlooked links between planning initiatives and incident command, namely, the National Incident Management System (NIMS), and its command / management and multiagency coordination approaches. At that point we will explore the interface between field operations, the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and disaster plans, with the course concluding as students craft and present a case study that examines a disaster planning topic of their choice.
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Public Health Systems Preparedness (MPA 521 SYS) (2 credits)
This course deals with important health and management issues involved in crises and emergencies presented for the non-medical disaster manager. The wide range of medical and health issues inherent to crises and emergencies are described. The course covers topics such as differentiation between natural and man-mediated outbreaks in the community (SARS, influenza, smallpox, E. coli H-157, etc.); Methods for integrating medical, public health and psychological processes into disaster management; Review of health systems implications of nuclear, biological, and chemical disasters. This course is designed to meet the need for a recognized curriculum in the Public Health aspects of disaster care and organized emergency medical services systems.
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Semester 3

Initiating and Managing a Disaster Recovery Plan / Field Experience (MPA 532 PCA/ MPA 532 FLD) (3 credits, 2 credits for field)
In the third semester of the Constructive Action, students are expected to implement the disaster plan they developed in the second semester. Students will be involved in all phases of plan implementation at the customer’s site; designing an implementation, education, and revision program; developing an ongoing assessment instrument; Creation of a P-D-C-A feedback loop to measure effectiveness of education and real organizational change. Students will be involved with direct customer consulting, education, assessment, and program re-evaluation.
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Individual and Collective Responses to Disaster (MPA 532 SEL) (2 credits)
This course will review the impact of various types of disasters on individuals, groups and communities, with a focus on vulnerable populations and various cultural groups. Students will be able to distinguish between myths about disaster response and how people actually react. The class will examine best practices such as Mental Health Focused Risk Communication, Psychological First Aid, Self-Care and Stress Management that can be employed throughout the disaster cycle to counteract the psychological impact of the incident. Students will gain an expanded awareness of the various strategies that have been developed to promote desired behavioral responses and compliance with disaster related directives.
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Economic and Social Trends and the Organization of Services (MPA 532 SYS) (2 credits)
A topics course organized about the various work settings for emergency management with a focus on how they are similar to the traditional model and how they differ. Includes presentation from federal, local, private sector and not-for-profit perspectives. This course offers a broad perspective on the various facets of emergency management, the value systems in different work environments, and how emergency managers get resources when competing against other demands. The class examines the major emergency management settings, including government, transit systems, healthcare, financial markets, environmental agencies, public utilities, banking, military, and education.
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Private Sector Emergency Management (MPA 532 VAL) (2 credits)
Private sector industry provides well over 90% of critical human and infrastructure support, so proper emergency planning for these organizations is crucial to ensuring the health and safety of the public. This class will focus on the needs of private sector industry, their paradigms, and their shortcomings. There will be a significant focus on best practices case studies and how the private sector is leading the public sector in creating a prepared community.
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Information Technology in Disaster Planning (MPA 533 VAL) (2 credits)
This Course reviews explores Information Technology (IT) from three major perspectives: What constitutes IT in Western Society, the integration of IT in the practice and methodology of Disaster Planning, and finally, how IT can be employed to prevent, delay, respond, mitigate, and recover from disasters.

IT in Western Society covers a broad range of technology from large scale mainframe computing environments, integrated networks, and the Internet, to local-area-networks, personal computing, personal digital assistants, and intelligent devices (such as GPS/Ultra-Wide Band RF Transceivers). This section will also describe best practices in regard to IT security, back-up and recovery and full Disaster Planning for the IT assets.

Contemporary Disaster Planning incorporates a wide range of issues, and collects huge amount of data. IT systems support the practice and methodology of Disaster Planning in the collection of data, its assessment in terms of pertinence and use, threat probability and preparedness prioritization.

The employment and deployment of IT for Disaster prevention, response and recovery is explored to include communications, assessment, and consequence management.
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Semester 4

Long Range Planning for Disaster Management / Field Experience (MPA 541 PCA/ MPA 541 FLD) (3 credits, 2 credits for field work)
Having experienced the development, implementation, and assessment of the organization’s disaster plan, students will chose to analyze one aspect of the previous semesters' process to complete the P-D-C-A model and revise and improve the disaster plan development model.
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Public Safety in the 21st Century (MPA 542 SEL)
The events of September 11, 2001 and the subsequent anthrax incidents brought growing attention to terrorism here in the United States. This course will focus on three important issues of major importance to both public safety officials and first responders: Fire/Emergency Procedures in High Rise Buildings; Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosives (CBRNE) Threats and Mitigation Techniques; and Advanced Communications Technology and Interoperability.
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The Federal Government’s Management of Natural and Man Made Disasters (MPA 542 SKI) (2 Credits)
This course is designed to provide students with an overview of the Federal Government’s role in planning, mitigating, preparing for, and responding to all disasters. This course will focus on analysis of the social, psychological, and political ramifications of Man Made vs. Natural Disasters. Students in this course will get an overview of the function of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and its programs, with a specific focus on the Federal Emergency Management Agency, students will get an overview of FEMA and its programs. This course will provide a comprehensive overview of counter-terrorism and homeland security while offering explanations to assist students understand the role of law enforcement agencies in emergency and disaster management.
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Topics in Emergency Management (MPA 541 SYS) (2 credits)
This course provides a basic overview of the international disaster response system, using the UN system and Sphere Project as a basis for understanding. The course begins with an overview of the brief history of international disaster response, basic terminology, principles of practice, and protocols surrounding responses. From there, students will review the various sectors in international disaster response, as well as the constantly changing issues of military intervention in disaster response, funding challenges and methodology, partnership and participation, and evaluation and monitoring in this field.
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Mailing Address MCNY (431 Canal Street New York, NY 10013 · 529 Courtlandt Avenue Bronx, New York 10451)
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