Bachelor of Science in National Security Studies


Program Director

James Dalton, MA

This program is designed for students interested in a career in national/homeland security or in furthering a career that requires knowledge of national security issues. As a graduate of the program, you will understand the contemporary national and global security issues, operations, and investigations affecting the United States. You will study the hostile behaviors and activities directed against the United States from various ethnic, cultural, organizational, state, and societal sources. You and your classmates will be able to identify the threats facing the United States and describe the various options available to U.S. government agencies to thwart or neutralize these hostile activities. This program is intended to meet the needs of employers in in both the private and public sectors, including the 18 federal agencies that comprise the U.S. intelligence community.

As a security professional, you will have the weight of the nation on your shoulders. You will be tasked with protecting the United States from threats ranging from hurricanes to terrorist attacks by anticipating potential problems and preparing plans to manage them.  A Norwich University degree in national security can help you develop the critical thinking, management and problem-solving skills you will need to succeed in a demanding, unpredictable field.

The NSS team will do whatever it can to ensure that your learning is maximized and that you graduate from the program with the knowledge that you have accomplished your goals.

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James Dalton is an experienced educator, with a focus on graduate and undergraduate military college program development and instruction. Earning the rank of commander with 27 years of active duty military experience in the U.S. Navy, Dalton has served as a naval flight officer and a professor at the Naval War College. As a military professor, he developed and managed military education programs for advanced warfare studies related to conventional and unconventional warfare across all phases. During his assignment as a joint experimentation officer, he designed and coordinated test programs for new systems to benefit all branches of the U.S. Special Forces and developed curriculum dedicated to unconventional warfare education. He has his master’s degree in national security and strategic studies from the Naval War College, as well as a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Missouri.

Bachelor of Science in Strategic Studies and Defense Analysis
Bachelor of Science in National Security Studies
Master of Arts in Strategic Studies

Assistant Program Manager
Chelsea Copeland

Chelsea Copeland joined Norwich University Online in May 2016 as an enrollment adviser for bachelor's students. In February 2018, she assumed the role of Assistant Program Manager for Strategic Studies, National Security Studies, and Criminal Justice degree programs for a number of areas related to curriculum, instruction, and the assessment of student learning outcomes. Chelsea previous worked on Norwich's residential campus and handled the South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, and Virginia states for admissions’ recruiting territory. Chelsea completed her bachelor’s degree in communications from Norwich in 2012. Her hobbies include running, hiking, yoga and spontaneous travel as she enjoys seeing/learning what the world has to offer.

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Featured Faculty

Brett J. Morash, PhD

Brett J. Morash is the Director of Operations and Finance at the Bob Woodruff Foundation based in New York City and a retired U.S. Naval Officer with over 20 years of diverse leadership experience in assignments across the globe. Previously he was the Vice President of Veteran’s Services at Services for the UnderServed, Inc. a nonprofit based in New York City focused on improving at risk people’s lives where he was responsible for the day-to-day operations of multiple programs related to veterans' issues including homeless prevention, employment, mental health and wellness, with over a $15 million annual budget. Prior to retirement his final assignment was on the military faculty of the U.S. Naval War College where he educated military officers and senior civilian personnel on strategy, risk analysis, and operational planning. He received a bachelor’s in marine transportation from the Massachusetts Maritime Academy. He furthered his education at Framingham State College earning a master’s in business administration. He later earned a master of arts degree in national security and strategic studies from the U.S. Naval War College. Most recently he earned his PhD in the Humanities from Salve Regina University where his dissertation was entitled “The Rise and Fall of the Union of Islamic Courts.” His professional experience has developed his skills in research, management, technological innovation, and concept creation.

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David Blank, PhD, MBA

A member of the Norwich University faculty since 2008, David Blank primarily teaches courses in chemistry and forensic science. He previously held teaching positions at Dartmouth College, Castleton State College, and Keene State College. In addition to teaching, he works as an independent contractor conducting pharmaceutical industry and chemical research. The owner of five patents and the author of more than 20 publications, he holds a PhD in organic chemistry from Dartmouth College, an MBA in organizational leadership from Norwich University, an ScM in analytical organic photochemistry from Saint Joseph’s University, and a BS in chemistry from Albright College.

Natalia Blank, PhD
Christopher Costa, COL, USA (ret)
Andrew Countis, MA

Andrew Countis is the Coordinator of Prior Learning for the College of Graduate and Continuing Studies at Norwich University and an adjunct faculty member for several Norwich online bachelor’s programs. He has over 15 years of experience in education in a variety of capacities. For Norwich, he has developed and taught several history courses including HIST210 History of the United States Constitution, HIST310 Historical Studies, and HIST425 American Foreign Policy in the Twentieth Century. He received his bachelor’s degree in political science from Louisiana State University, and his master’s degree in history from Southeastern Louisiana University. His areas of specialization include the modern American presidency and presidential elections.

Sara Dias, MA
Kevin Dougherty, PhD, LTC USA (ret)

BS, US Military Academy

MA, International Relations, Troy State University

MA, Strategic Studies, US Army War College

Ph. D, International Development, University of Southern Mississippi

Robert R. Greene Sands, PhD

Robert R. Greene Sands is an anthropologist and Director/Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of Culture and Language (ISCL) at Norwich University. He is also Editor of the ISCL’s online journal: the Journal of Culture, Language and International Security (JCLIS). He is also currently a Senior Research Consortium Fellow for Army Research Institute. From 2008 to 2011, Dr. Sands was Culture Chair, then Chair, of the Cross-Cultural Competence Department, and Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the Air Force Culture and Language Center (AFCLC) and Air University at Maxwell AFB, AL. He was also Director of the Minerva Initiative for Energy and Environmental Security during his tenure at Air University. Dr. Sands is a consultant supporting the development of culture and cross-cultural competence programs across the Department of Defense. He has presented to organizations such as AFRICOM, 17th Air Force, the US Air Force Expeditionary Center, the Joint Chaplains College, Special Operations Command, the JAG School, Advanced Air Mobility Operations, Joint Military Attaché School, Joint Foreign Area Officer Phase One course, Defense and National Intelligence professionals, among others. Dr. Sands has authored seven books and numerous chapters and articles on topics such as cross-cultural competence, environmental security, building partnerships and sustainability, sport and culture, ethnographic theory, and the cognitive origins of religion. His seventh book (co-authored with Allison Greene-Sands) is Cross-Cultural Competence for a 21st Century Military Culture: the Flipside of COIN (2013, Lexington Books). Dr. Sands holds a BA from Illinois State University, an MA from Iowa State University and a PhD from University of Illinois, all in anthropology.

Mary T. Hall, JD, MA, LTC USN (ret)

B.A. History, Columbus College

M.A. Military History, Norwich University

JD, University of Georgia School of Law

LL.M. Judge Advocate General’s School of the Army

John Jennings, PhD

A specialist in Japanese history and a visiting researcher at Sophia University and International Christian University in Japan, John M. Jennings has written numerous books, articles, and reviews on Asian and military history. His publications include The Opium Empire: Japanese Imperialism and Narcotics Trafficking in Asia, 1895-1945 and the forthcoming Encountering Barbarians: Essays in the History of East Asian International Relations, 1428-1967. He is currently completing Taxed in Blood: A History of the Military, State, and Society in Japan, a new book for Reaktion Books. In addition to teaching in Norwich University’s world history and military history programs, Jennings teaches Asian, military, and world history for the United States Air Force Academy. A Philadelphia native, he earned his doctoral and master’s degrees from the University of Hawaii at Manoa and his bachelor’s degree from Penn State University.

Brian Kupfer, PhD

BS, Political Science, Florida State University

M.A., Political Anthropology, Claremont Graduate College

Ph. D, Political Science, Claremont Graduate College

Daniel Lane, PhD
Timothy Maynard, EdD

BS, Applied Science, US Naval Academy

MA, National Security and Strategic Studies, US Naval War College

Doctor of Education, Educational Leadership, Johnson and Wales University

Daniel Morris, PhD
James Murray, MS
Mark L. Parker, PhD

Mark L. Parker is Associate Professor and Chair, Division of Continuing Studies at Norwich University's College of Graduate and Continuing Studies. He is responsible for the online bachelor’s degree completion programs as well as all non-degree continuing education courses and programs. He also serves as the College of Graduate and Continuing Studies’ quality control officer for online undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Prior to joining Norwich University in 2013 he worked at University of Maryland University College (UMUC), where he specialized in the creation, management, and improvement of UMUC’s online courses and programs. He received his bachelor's and master's degrees from Florida State University, and his PhD from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. His areas of research interest include intercultural and technology-mediated communication; factors affecting student success and retention in online/web-based education; and English as a second/foreign language. A veteran of the U.S. Air Force, he has more than 25 years of experience in higher education administration and teaching.

Robert Pauly, PhD

Robert Pauly is a faculty member in the diplomacy and international relations graduate programs at Norwich. Specializing in American foreign policy and national security, he is fluent in French and German languages. Robert has published numerous books, articles and book chapters on various subjects. He a tenured Associate Professor of International Policy and Development at The University of Southern Mississippi. He earned his master's and doctorate in international studies from Old Dominion University.

Recent Publications

US Foreign Policy and the Persian Gulf: Safeguarding American Interests Through Selective Multilateralism (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate Publishing Limited, 2005).

Islam in Europe: Integration or Marginalization? (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate Publishing Limited, 2004).

Ashgate Research Companion to US Foreign Policy, edited volume (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate Publishing Limited, 2010).

“An Assessment of the Barack H. Obama Administration’s Approach to the Threats to US National Security Posed by Iran,” in Jack Covarrubias, Douglas Brattebo, Tom Lansford and Robert P. Watson, ed., The Obama Presidency: A Preliminary Assessment (New York: SUNY Press, 2012).


Rosemarie Pelletier, DPA

Dr. Pelletier served as the Secretary of the Virginia State Technology Council where she advised the Executive and Legislative branches on technology policy issues. She chaired the Transportation Technology Advisory Panel in writing the Transportation Technology Blueprint for the Commonwealth of Virginia. She was appointed by Governor George Allen to the Joint Committee on Technology and Science to study and advise on technology and science policies. Appointed by Governor Mark Warner, Dr. Pelletier served on the statewide speakers bureau to address transportation funding issues throughout the Commonwealth. She combines her knowledge and experience in technology policy with her education in public policy and public administration to bring the best of both worlds to Norwich University.

Tracey Poirier, MA

Lieutenant Colonel Tracey Poirier has served as the Commander of the Brigade Support Battalion since September 2013. She graduated from Norwich University in 1996 with a Bachelor’s degree in English and Media Communications. She went on to complete her graduate education at Oxford University in England as a Rhodes Scholar earning two master’s degrees, one in anthropology and one in human resource management.

LTC Poirier enlisted into the US Army Reserve in July 1991 where she served as a Unit Supply Specialist in Wellsville, New York. Her enlistment was shortened upon earning a United States Marine Corps Scholarship to attend Norwich University from which she received her commission in May 1996. During her eight years of active duty with the United States Marine Corps, she found herself stationed at Marine Forces Europe; Quantico, Virginia; and Camp Smith, Hawaii where she deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Following her Active Duty service, LTC Poirier joined the Vermont Army National Guard in 2006 serving in several roles including Company Commander, Tactical Information Operations Course Instructor, 124th Regimental S-1, 86th IBCT (MTN) Brigade Rear-Detachment S-1, and Support Operations Officer for 186th Brigade Support Battalion. She will be attending the US Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania for the 2016-17 academic year.

LTC Poirier began working at Norwich University in 2007 and has served as the Director of Annual Giving and the Director of the International Center. She is currently employed as the Assistant Vice President for Leadership and Student Experience at Norwich where she also instructs classes in English and anthropology. She resides in Barre Town with her husband, the other LTC Poirier, and their four children Emma, Beth, Will and John.

Samantha Powers, PhD
Jeffrey Shaw, PhD

BA, History, St. Anselm College

MA, National Security and Strategic Studies, US Naval War College

PhD, Humanities, Salve Regina University

Robert St. Peter, LTC USMC (ret)
Lea Williams, PhD
David Witty, MA, LTC USA (ret)

BA, History, University of Arkansas

MA, History, University of Pennsylvania