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Threats posed by terrorism and nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons remain leading concerns on the global security agenda.

Casey Mahoney NPTS ’12: Language Is Integral to My Job

Being able to access documents and media reports in a foreign language first hand directly from sources is something that’s really important. Living in Washington DC, just walking down the street, passing an Ethiopian restaurant with Aramaic script, or hearing languages spoken outside of Embassies as you walk by.

It’s really hard to forget that language is an incredibly important part of who people are. And the field that I work in, in international affairs and non-proliferation, it’s taking a step back and looking at the globe and what’s going on. The amount of conflict and misunderstanding that occurs, not just due to mistakes in translation but true inability of parties to communicate across cultural lines is something that I’m reminded of daily.

So while I’ve been at the Department of Defense, I’ve worked on programs that have worked with partners cooperatively to help reduce or secure or prevent the proliferation of materials that can be used by bad actors to pose weapons of mass destruction threats. Watching the news, it’s hard not to hear the letters WMD or to hear about a recent terrorist group or a recent terrorist attack.

And studying those issues was something that I felt like I could make a tangible impact, certainly in my career, that would allow me to go and do something in the real world afterwards. Learning language is one step that students who want to be leaders in this field, in the future, should take if they have the opportunity.

And I definitely felt that going to the Middlebury Institute was my opportunity.

Students can take electives in related subjects such as regional and area studies, global economics, cyber security, and international environmental issues. Opportunities for internships with government agencies and international organizations are available, and select students participate in an honors thesis program. 

See the curriculum for more details.

Learning Goals

Our curriculum incorporates Learning Goals to prepare you for careers addressing security threats posed by terrorism and nuclear, biological, chemical, and radiological weapons. 

Dual Degree Option

Students who are specifically interested in WMD issues and U.S.-Russia relations can apply for the Institute’s Dual Degree in Nonproliferation Studies with the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO).

Certificate Options

NPTS students can use their electives to add the Financial Crime Management specialization.

Individuals not enrolled in our degree programs can earn a Certificate in Terrorism StudiesCertificate in Nonproliferation Studies, or Financial Crime Management certificate from the Middlebury Institute in as little as one semester.

Terrorism Studies Club

The Terrorism Studies Club (TSC) is a student-led organization that engages students in dialogue and research regarding current terrorism- and counterterrorism-related issues. By providing educational, professional, and social events, TSC helps students fulfill their academic potential and embark on successful careers as intelligence, security, and counterterrorism professionals.

Please contact if you are interested in getting involved.

Careers and Internships

Students gain professional experience through internships, prestigious fellowships, and other real-world, immersive programs.

Our graduates work within some of the most prestigious organizations around the world. Learn how they are thriving in their careers.

IAEA Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellowship Programme

The Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellowship Programme (MSCFP) aims to help grow the number of women in the nuclear field. Selected students receive a scholarship for up to 2 years for a master’s program in nuclear science and technology, nuclear safety and security, or nonproliferation studies at accredited universities, which includes the Middlebury Institute’s MA in Nonproliferation and Terrorism Studies. You will also be provided with an opportunity to pursue an internship at the IAEA for up to 12 months. Learn more.

Tuition and Fees

Visit our tuition and fees for detailed information.