The Center for National Security Studies (CNSS) at Utah Valley University was established in 2016. The Center is the first of its kind in the State of Utah. The CNSS offers an active and vibrant academic environment on campus to expose students to the wide variety of critically important security challenges and issues we face in the twenty-first century. The CNSS aims to provide students with the knowledge, skills, and opportunities needed to succeed in the growing national security sector.


The CNSS is a nonpartisan academic institution for the instruction, analysis, and discussion of the issues related to the field of U.S. national security. The mission of the CNSS is twofold: to promote an interdisciplinary academic environment on campus that critically examines both the theoretical and practical aspects of national security policy and practice; and to assist students in preparing for public and private sector national security careers through acquisition of subject matter expertise, analytical skills, and practical experience. The CNSS partners with local, regional, national, and international public and private sector organizations to promote this mission.


The CNSS provides students with extensive learning opportunities in national security – both inside and outside of the classroom. Students are expected to grapple with the same questions that confront practitioners, policy-makers, and others involved in the national security field.

UVU offers a variety of interesting and challenging courses in national security and related subjects. In these classes, students acquire skills such as critical thinking, writing, briefing, and analysis techniques specifically tailored for the national security field, but applicable in many others.

The CNSS also provides a wide range of extracurricular academic opportunities to students interested in national security, including speaking events, symposia, student panel discussions and debates, book and film discussions, brown-bag events, student club activities and events, and networking events.


UVU’s Center for National Security Studies provides students invaluable opportunities to engage first-hand in national security issues.

Students have opportunities to intern in Utah and across the country with:

  • National security departments and agencies of the federal government
  • U.S. Congress and its committees
  • State government agencies and offices
  • Key international organizations
  • Non-governmental organizations
  • Think-tanks, non-profits, advocacy groups, and academic centers
  • Private sector companies


Careers related to national security are among the fastest growing professions in the country, with opportunities in both the public and private sectors and in Utah and across the United States. Utah has experienced tremendous growth in the national security sector and Utah’s unique set of strengths has made it a common destination and recruitment source for national security employers.

The CNSS provides students with the skills and experience required to fill national security positions in government, the defense industry, the private sector, research institutions, and non-governmental and international organizations.

The CNSS also assists students in preparing for careers and advanced degree programs in fields with connections to national security studies, such as law, international relations, military, homeland security, criminal justice, public administration, and political science.