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Three dimensions of security education.

SECURITY EDUCATION ENGAGES NOT only students but also their employers and the institutions of learning. Because all are affected, such programs work best when all parties work together and understand each other's motivations. In the spirit of fostering such understanding, the following is a three-sided view of the Security Management Certificate Program offered by the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada. The first view is that of the student, the second that of his employer, and the third that of a professor in the program.

A Student's View

BY WALTER G. PIGEON, CPP WHAT IS THE SECURITY MANAGEMENT Certificate Program? What has it done for me? What can it do for you?

High tech has changed the face of security. With the silicon chip comes a need for an educational foundation in how new security systems work, what they can do for us, and where we can

et the most bang for the buck.

Money is never overly abundant at budget time, so we need a good understanding of the systems we acquire. We can best obtain that understanding by taking the appropriate training. I would suggest that the Security Management Certificate Program is just such training.

In the fall of 1986, when one of my coworkers showed me the University of Alberta Faculty of Extension calendar outlining the program, it was a case of good timing. I was ripe for some education. At that time, my department was primarily an investigative force, with little in the way of a systems approach to preventive security, and I felt dissatisfied with the level of my security systems knowledge. By taking the security courses, I felt I would be satisfying a personal need to become better at my job.

That same coworker and I enrolled in the program that fall and began a period of intense activity. We began a course of study that would mean traveling about 3,000 kilometers to and fro, spending over 300 hours in class and at least as many at home, writing enough words to fill a novel, and reading a small library of texts and reference works.

Although it was work, it was good work. It was interesting, challenging, and rewarding - and not without its ups and downs. Finally, eight courses and 2 1/2 years later, I have completed the program.

As for the benefits of pursuing the certificate, there were many. A direct benefit has been the knowledge acquired through the program-not only security knowledge but also general management knowledge. I'm now in a position where I might not know an answer, but at least I have a much better idea of where to find it.

A second direct benefit is that I was able to acquire the CPP designation. Gaining the designation would have been much slower and more difficult had it not been for the information I learned in my studies.

One of the most significant benefits lies in having met a lot of people in the industry, both through the courses and indirectly as a result of joining ASIS. One of the best security systems in existence is the network of like-minded professionals who have addressed common issues. To be able to reach out and touch somebody is perhaps the heart and soul of the security industry. It puts the resolution of your security problem only a phone call away.

The most tangible benefit of pursuing the training is that I was promoted within the corporate security department of Alberta Government Telephones. I feel confident that I could not have been seriously considered for promotion had I not taken the steps to acquire the Security Management Certificate.

Other benefits include increased confidence and competence, enhanced self-esteem, enhanced promotability and transferability, recognition, and job fortification.

That, then, is what the Security Management Certificate Program has done for me. I suggest that it can provide the same sorts of benefits for you. It is an extremely worthwhile course of study for anyone in the industrial security field.

An Employer's View

BY BARRY O. HAWRYLUK MANY OF THE REASONS TO VALUE EDucation fall into the realm of the intuitive. People just seem to know, as if it were self-evident, that formal, postsecondary training is a valuable experience. On closer examination, however, some very legitimate and rational reasons exist for valuing education, from both the corporate and the individual perspective.

The first reason formal, postsecondary, academic experience is an asset to the security field is that events in security are merely a reflection of what is happening in the world around us. Security personnel occasionally express surprise and concern over changes in the industry. That phenomenon is but a symptom of what is occurring throughout society. Five or 10 years ago, for example, all that was required to be guaranteed a long and prosperous security career was 25 years in the military or police.

The industry has changed dramatically and, like the rest of society, has become automated and much more complex. No longer does a military or police background alone provide the qualifications necessary to perform all the contemporary job requirements of a security practitioner. Such a person must now have knowledge of such subjects as

* fire regulations,

* management practices,

* accounting,

* electronic data processing security,

* physical security,

* closed-circuit television,

* card access technology,

* interviewing skills,

* surveillance techniques,

* executive protection,

* employee grievance procedures, and

* civil rights. Just 10 years ago many of these concepts simply didn't appear in the repertoire of many security practitioners.

Faced with increasing complexities and automation, the security industry needs to respond and has generally done so. More and more security personnel use the word professional; seminars and courses are proliferating; and certificate programs in security are growing in number. I believe joint initiatives between the security profession and academia are absolutely vital to ensure that our profession continues to fulfill the role it has traditionally occupied and that the quality of security courses remains high.

A second major benefit of additional formal security training relates to the increased attention to a business's bottom line. In such a climate, the security group must contribute its fair share to corporate initiatives, objectives, and profitability-hence the need for highly trained and motivated staff who can

* be creative and innovative,

* recognize the need to work smarter and not necessarily harder,

* do more with less,

* perform old jobs in new, smarter, and more efficient ways, and

* identify proactive remedies rather than reactive responses. With the types of training currently offered in the postsecondary arena, graduates can enrich both the security group and the company.

The third benefit, which is frequently overlooked, relates to the hiring process. While a manager hiring for a security position should recruit the best person for the job at hand, the individual recruited should also be able to fill other corporate roles over time. At a time when more and more institutions are organizing and reorganizing on what seems like a daily basis and downsizing has become a common expression. hiring must be done with a view to recruiting a corporate resource.

Forecasters predict fast-track employees of the future will be generalists. They will have to demonstrate a willingness to use their general management skills rather than the talents they developed in their field of formal training. For example, the director of the accounting section in one large, important corporation has a PhD in nuclear physics. Another example would be a senior personnel officer who holds a business or law degree.

The final benefit, a more individualized one, relates to the ability of the formally trained security practitioner to compete in what can be a tough job market. Experienced security staff recruiters report receiving 100 to 150 applications for each vacant position. Indeed, it is becoming difficult for applicants to make the "short list" without formal postsecondary education.

Employers generally feel that persons who have completed postsecondary work possess research skills as well as the ability to express themselves properly in writing. Both are important qualities and ones difficult to master without formal training-not impossible, but difficult.

Many other benefits accrue to persons who have formal, postsecondary training before they pursue a career in security. Clearly, the need is for better-trained, more flexible practitioners who can truly call themselves professionals.

A Professor's View

BY ALBERT A. EINSIEDEL, JR. MANY OCCUPATIONAL GROUPS ASPIRE to greater professionalism. Why? Is it really necessary? What does it mean to professionalize an occupational group? Who benefits, and at what cost? How is professionalism achieved? And what is the role of professional education and accreditation? These questions have concerned professionals, including security managers, for years.

Professional development occurs in a variety of formal and informal ways. Completing a formal program of study leading to professional accreditation is only one means. Other activities that contribute to professional development are attending conferences, mentoring, individual study, and on-the-job training. Of course, there is also the often underrated experience derived from doing the job.

An educational certification program is not an end in itself, nor should its existence accord the group that administers it professional status. Likewise, graduating from such a program does not make the graduate a professional. However, such programs are important steps toward professionalization.

Not everyone who holds a job calls himself or herself a professional. In fact, not all occupational groups desire the status and responsibilities of a profession. One clue as to why members of some occupational groups have moved toward greater professionalism lies in the differences between jobs, careers, and professions.

A job can be defined as a set of tasks requiring a certain amount of knowledge and skill. A career may be a single job or a series of jobs. The most significant distinction between a job and a career is the person's perception of how important his or her work-related behaviors and attitudes are to his or her identity. Careers are also thought of as being progressive; therefore, lack of advancement is viewed as an indication of career stagnation, if not failure.

What is a profession? The answer is complicated. A professional might be simply a non-amateur, or he or she might be part of a formally organized body of practitioners who call themselves professionals.

Why do some occupational groups professionalize? The answer lies in history. Some scholars believe the professions emerged gradually after the Middie Ages. The guild organizations of practitioners of religion, medicine, and law were among the progenitors of professions.

One explanation for the proliferation of professions is the increased specialization urban societies demand. As specialization increased, competence, autonomy, commitment, and responsibility became more valued. Amateurs were separated from professionally trained people.

In general, professionalism involves several formal elements. First, a professional provides service to a client, with whom he or she has a special relationship that goes beyond merely exchanging service for a fee. The relationship is cultivated and protected and sometimes requires confidentiality.

Second, to provide the service, the professional uses prescribed techniques based on a body of knowledge passed on through often lengthy and difficult professional education and training. The education and training are typically supervised by qualified members of the profession. Completion of prescribed programs of study entitles the graduate to an educational credential-usually a diploma-that is recognized by the profession he or she wishes to join.

Third, professionals emphasize research and continuing education. Research enables the profession to expand and upgrade its body of knowledge. Continuing education enables the practitioner to stay abreast of changes in the field.

Fourth, professionals share a set of beliefs about what is acceptable conduct among the people who belong to their profession. Such beliefs are usually expressed formally in a code of ethics.

Fifth, professionals enjoy a measure of autonomy. For example, they determine the minimum education and work experience required of new members. Most professionals regard themselves as relatively free to make their own decisions about how best to use their knowledge and skills to serve their clients. They also determine their own code of ethics. More importantly, they enforce the ethics code themselves.

Sixth, professionals belong to professional associations or societies. Such organizations facilitate interaction among members, encourage expansion of the body of knowledge, regulate the entrance of new members through a formal process of accreditation, define educational and ethical standards, and discipline members for breaches of the code of ethics.

The process of professionalization is much the same for all occupational groups. What distinguishes one from the other is the degree to which they feature the characteristics of a profession.

ASIS HAS LONG BEEN CONCERNED about the codification and acquisition of security knowledge and skills. In setting up the Security Management Certificate Program, ASIS leaders and the University of Alberta examined the following questions:

* To what extent is it possible to define the specialized body of knowledge cultivated by security managers?

* What is the nature of the body of knowledge?

* How do security managers contribute to its expansion?

* Who carries out research?

* How is new knowledge codified?

* How is new knowledge passed on?

One goal of the Security Management Certificate Program is to provide the best available courses relevant to the needs of today's security managers. Another goal is to anticipate changes in the field and prepare practitioners for those changes.

Certification programs evolve from rudimentary sets of ideas to formal structures with elaborate academic policies and administrative procedures. The Security Management Certificate Program evolved through the following steps:

* Informal dialogue and networking. ASIS members articulated the need for increasing the effectiveness of existing programs, recognizing educational credentials across provinces, and promoting cooperation among jurisdictions.

* Exchange of educational and accreditation information. This ongoing activity enables professionals to know what others are doing and how they are doing it.

* Face-to-face meetings. These meetings led to the establishment of the advisory committee, its goals, membership, and operating guidelines. The advisory committee links the practitioners, the Faculty of Extension, and the administrators and instructors responsible for implementing the program's policies and procedures.

* Core curriculum. A core curriculum common to all Canadian security managers was defined.

* Flexibility. A measure of flexibility was built into the program to allow for differences in jurisdiction, organizational context, and types of jobs held by security managers.

* Evaluation criteria. Course evaluation criteria, standards, and procedures were established.

ASIS and the University of Alberta still have many unanswered questions to resolve in the years to come. For example, to what extent should curricula be standardized across Canada? How rapidly should a national system for all provinces and territories be developed? How strictly should national standards be applied? What degree of freedom should provinces have in setting their own educational requirements? Should all the courses be at the university level? Should the courses be degree-oriented? Who should teach them? How should they be delivered? How should courses from other provinces and postsecondary institutions be regarded?

The answers to these questions are elusive, but they are important. These issues affect security managers' jobs, careers, sense of professional identity, and status.

It is possible and desirable for an occupational group to gain greater credibility and professional status and prestige. It is also possible and desirable to gain autonomy, power, and acceptance. However, the process of gaining such benefits is not easy.

There has to be a vision of what the profession hopes to become. There has to be a strong will to shape the profession's future. There has to be leadership and support, not only from practitioners but also from politicians, government managers, and the public. There has to be financial investment at all levels to realize the vision at the individual, organizational, and professional levels.

The role of postsecondary institutions should be considered carefully, particularly the role of universities and colleges that are willing and able to work with industry leaders to design, develop, and deliver suitable educational and training programs.

Content experts from among academics and practitioners must be identified and recruited. Course designers and developers must be commissioned. Research intended to discover new knowledge about the field must be encouraged, and the findings must be incorporated into the literature to which practitioners are exposed. Courses and programs of study offered by various educational and training institutions must be accredited to maintain uniform standards and credibility.

Also needed is a vigorous campaign to promote the image of the emerging "new security manager" who is professionally trained and educated through a credible process. Employers, government, and the public must be informed and persuaded that professionalism is important and worthwhile and that they must bear some of the costs of the professionalization of security managers.

The future looks good, but it is only a continuation of the past. There are lessons to be learned from the parallel efforts of other emerging professions. Because of the combined benefits of hindsight and foresight, I am confident the future will be a good and productive one. * About the Authors ... Walter G. Pigeon, CPP, is manager of corporate security (north) for Alberta Government Telephones in Edmonton, Canada. He graduated with distinction from the Security Management Certificate Program at the University of Alberta. Barry O. Hawryluk is corporate manager of security for Alberta Government Telephones. Albert A. Einsiedel, Jr., is a professor of extension and director of business programs at the University of Alberta. ASIS for Education SINCE ITS INCEPTION, ASIS HAS played a leading role in the continuing educational development of security practitioners. Whether you are pursuing a graduate degree, seeking to stay abreast of the latest developments in the security industry, or simply learning the basics, ASIS has the resources to help you succeed.

One of the Society's most recent educational endeavors was to set up a pilot master's degree program with a focus in security. This experiment began in 1987 when the ASIS Foundation teamed up with Central Michigan University (CMU) to provide a unique master of science in administration degree program.

The pilot program worked in this way: Members of three cohorts, or groups of at least 30 individuals, attended classes established through local ASIS chapters in Washington, DC, Philadelphia, and Dallas. Classes were offered on weeknights or weekends to enable full-time security practitioners to attend.

To fulfill the pilot program's requirements, students had to complete 36 credit hours of graduatelevel work. The courses included 18 credit hours of security administration and 12 credit hours of general administration classes that all CMU master's degree students take at CMU and its 55 off-campus centers. In addition to these requirements, students had to complete a three-hour seminar and a three-hour independent project.

The students will soon graduate, and the Foundation will offer the program at other major universities that recognize the nation's market for security management masters' degrees.

The Foundation has two other educational programs in the planning stages designed to meet specific educational needs of other security practitioners: a bachelor's degree in security, and curricula for a master's degree in security.

ASIS Foundation Staff Director Charles Davidson explains that the need for a bachelor's security management credential is strong: "As many as 30 percent of our constituency may lack a bachelor's degree, and there are others who have a bachelor's but want the added security management credential.

"While there are many fine bachelor's programs offered throughout the country," he continues, "none emphasizes security management studies even as a subset of a criminal justice degree. "

Recognizing this need as well as the time constraints on full-time security practitioners, the Foundation's primary concern in developing this program is to enable individuals in any area of the country to participate. Recognizing the unpopularity of correspondence courses, Davidson searched for a distance learning system that would be attractive to students as well as carry valuable academic credentials.

A tripartite effort has since been developed with ASIS Foundation sponsorship to link students electronically via the Electronic University Network to a major university. Students would be able to participate in security-related courses through a PC while taking core undergraduate courses from their local community colleges. A model has been developed, and universities are being encouraged to submit proposals to participate in a pilot project to launch the program.

The partnership between CMU and the ASIS Foundation served as the first step toward graduate studies in security management. Now the Foundation, in conjunction with Sacramento State University, is exploring the development of the first security management graduate degree curriculum.

"The creation of the degree is a clear signal of the acceptance of security management as a freestanding management science," explains Davidson. "This shifts the informal focus of security to a primary focus. A lot of people in criminal justice programs actually want a security management degree, and the Foundation wants to design a curriculum to meet that need. "

With the assistance of Ron Heskett and the ASIS Foundation Board,, an ad hoc panel of highly regarded security management academics, practitioners, and theorists has been commissioned to design a model curriculum for such a program. The information is still being gathered, and Davidson has targeted 1992 as the date to launch the curriculum for colleges and universities interested in being on the cutting edge of academic programming.

In addition to these educational programs. ASIS offers the Assets Protection Courses (APCs). These intensive courses are designed for security professionals and newcomers to the field. Taught by experts, each week-long course discusses and analyzes the latest security trends.

APC I: Concepts and Methods lays the foundation for the APC programs. This program reinforces the fundamentals of security management and presents the latest techniques and theories in the industry. The scope of the program ranges from strikes and labor relations to systems security, from security and the law to emergency and disaster planning.

APC II: Practical Applications builds on APC I. This program analyzes trends and provides a forum for sharing information. Industrial espionage, computer crime. and executive protection are just a few of the many topics covered.

APC III: Functional Management was designed to meet the needs of top security managers by furthering their management skills in communication, budgetary operations, stress management, ethics, leadership, and dealing with substance abuse in the workplace.

Executive Update, a follow-up program currently in the development stage, will soon be available to practitioners who have completed the first three APCs or have the CPP designation. This two- to three-day roundtable discussion program will concentrate on current trends in management and security.

The opportunity to pursue your security education doesn't end here. For further professional development, the Society offers workshops geared to specific security considerations throughout the year and throughout the country. These workshops include in-depth focuses on the latest in retail security, investigations, government security, proprietary data, and disaster management, to name only a few. Check each issue of Security Management for its "ASIS Events" column to find out what's coming.

Finally, if you are interested in other institutions that offer security courses, see the December 1989 issue of Security Management, page 75-"A Study of Security." This article lists colleges and universities that offer academic courses and degree programs in security. * About the Author . . . Joan H. Murphy is associate editor at Security Management.
COPYRIGHT 1990 American Society for Industrial Security
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1990 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:includes related article on American Society for Industrial Security's role in education
Author:Pigeon, Walter G.; Hawryluk, Barry O.; Eisiedel, Albert A., Jr.; Murphy, Joan H.
Publication:Security Management
Date:Jun 1, 1990
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