Congress and Homeland Security

This four-day course is conducted entirely on Capitol Hill.  It is designed for personnel from the Department of Homeland Security, as well as individuals from any other department, agency or organization with an interest in Congress and homeland security issues.  The purpose of the course is to increase the participants’ understanding of Congress’s role in the oversight of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), as well as in Congress’s interactions with other departments and agencies with respect to issues of homeland security.  By becoming better informed as to how Congress is organized and operates on issues of homeland security, participants can increase their effectiveness in the policymaking environment both within their own agencies and before Congress.

Participants will hear from — and be able to engage in discussion with — members of Congress, congressional staff, academic observers, news media representatives, and others.  Participants will also have the opportunity to observe congressional committee hearings and floor action in the House and/or the Senate.

Topics may include:

  • Leadership and organization in Congress
  • Key stages in the authorization process
  • The budget and appropriations process
  • Congressional committee and floor procedure
  • Representing constituent interests
  • The role of committee staff
  • Congressional oversight of the executive branch
  • The relationship between the media and Congress
  • The role of special interests in policy formulation


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