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Work for the dignity of populations who are vulnerable to violence and deprivation.

Human Security Human Security

Protect and preserve human rights.

Human security draws on work in the fields of political science, economics, law, and public health to address a fundamental question: how can people protect themselves from severe challenges to their lives and livelihoods?

Areas of Focus

  • Civil wars and protection of civilians
  • Food security
  • Global climate change
  • Governance
  • Human trafficking
  • Refugees and internally displaced persons

Internship Experiences

Gain firsthand experience tackling human security issues to prepare for diverse careers in this field.

Previous Internship Sites

  • Flowminder
  • 412 Food Rescue
  • University of Pittsburgh’s University Center for Social and Urban Research
  • Three Rivers Workforce Investment Board
  • Minnesota Literacy Council 
View internship information

Career Paths

Whether it’s in community advocacy, crisis management, or another critical area, there are endless routes for pursuing a career in human security.

Potential Workplaces

  • International organizations like the United Nations, Public Law & Policy Group, and Conflict Dynamics International
  • Human rights organizations like Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and Equality Now
  • Government agencies like the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and United States Department of State (DOS)
  • Local government and community organizations
See alumni careers

Major Courses and Plans of Study

As a human security major, you can structure your studies along three alternative tracks: violence and conflict resolution; development, rights and gender; governance and the rule of law.

To understand the differences between the human security major as part of an MPIA or MID degree, compare their plans of study.

View MPIA plan of study View MID plan of study

Featured Courses

  • Understand the core concepts of human security, examine the institutions that promote them, and probe the advantages and limitations of human security as a means of addressing difficult policy issues. 

  • Gain a framework for understanding and analyzing ethnic conflicts and civil wars, the most pervasive forms of armed conflict in the world. Understand the impact of these intrastate conflicts, which kill millions of people, destabilize governments and entire societies, and often undermine regional stability. 

  • Examine various threats to political order around the world and how they manifest in different forms of violence, including organized crime, gang violence, insurgency, genocide, terrorism, and riots. 

View all Fall 2019 courses

Centers, Institutes, and Initiatives

Gain experience in research, teaching, and public service dedicated to advancing and protecting human rights.

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