On Friday, October 14, 2022, the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security (KOHS) and the Kentucky Intelligence Fusion Center (KIFC) hosted the first Kentucky Intelligence Symposium. The symposium sought to allow young and emerging professionals to participate in a discussion with public servants on both the state and federal level. Providing an opportunity to expand their networks to better serve the commonwealth and the nation. The symposium included speakers representing agencies such as KOHS, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Secret Service (USSS), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and others. The speakers explained their agencies, their individual roles, and the importance of their work within the U.S. Intelligence Community.
Kentucky Intelligence Fusion Center
The KIFC works with public safety and public service agencies at the federal, state, and local levels to compile, blend, analyze, and disseminate intelligence information. At the symposium, several members of the KIFC spoke about their roles in achieving the goal of sharing intelligence information and protecting the commonwealth. Attendees heard from analysts who worked in international terrorism, organized crime, and critical infrastructure.
There were also speakers from the U.S. Secret Service and FBI who elaborated on the employment application processes. They discussed what is involved in their work, and the various opportunities open to students and emerging professionals. An FBI analyst explained in detail how the FBI is structured, and how important the lesser-noticed analysts are in collecting intelligence. A U.S. Secret Service agent also discussed the benefits and difficulties of working in the field.
The symposium concluded with presentations from 911 dispatchers and an analyst from the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA). The 911 dispatchers discussed the evolution of next generation 911, tracing of 911 calls, and information sharing between 911 operations and the KIFC. The CISA analyst discussed physical and cyber infrastructure security, how dangerous cybersecurity threats are, and the future for protecting against cyber-attacks.
The event was an excellent opportunity for students to understand what careers in intelligence are available and what they entail. As a networking opportunity, each speaker encouraged attendees to approach them after their talks and were very attentive to questions. It was also beneficial to hear how the KIFC is a key component to keeping Kentucky safe through communication and information sharing with other agencies.
Lastly, the symposium provided students and opportunity to engage with individuals within the U.S. Intelligence Community beyond what is learned in the classroom through their coursework in intelligence studies. Therefore, the symposium was a great compliment to those students pursing the Certificate in Intelligence Studies at EKU, which includes the following courses:
- HLS 401 Intelligence Process
- HLS 402 Counterintelligence
- HLS 403 Intelligence Analysis
- HLS 430 Terrorism and Violent Extremism
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