Uni­ver­si­ties hope academy will help draw FBI to Md.

Baltimore Sun - - NEWS - By Tim Pru­dente Bal­ti­more Sun re­porter Erin Cox con­trib­uted to this ar­ti­cle. tpru­dente@balt­sun.com

The Uni­ver­sity of Mary­land, Col­lege Park and the Uni­ver­sity of Mary­land, Bal­ti­more plan to es­tab­lish a joint na­tional se­cu­rity academy for stu­dents and pro­fes­sion­als — a con­cept in­tended in part to help lure the FBI’s head­quar­ters to the state.

The brick-and-mor­tar academy would al­low both uni­ver­si­ties to ex­pand cur­rent pro­grams in cy­ber­se­cu­rity, law, crim­i­nol­ogy and coun­tert­er­ror­ism.

Of­fi­cials planned to an­nounce de­tails this morn­ing in Green­belt.

“By bring­ing all of those in­tel­lec­tual com­po­nents to­gether, we would have this vi­brant en­vi­ron­ment that would re­ally be con­ducive to the FBI re­lo­cat­ing to Mary­land,” said Don­ald Tobin, dean of the Fran­cis King Carey School of Law at the Uni­ver­sity of Mary­land, Bal­ti­more.

The FBI is plan­ning to leave its cur­rent head­quar­ters in Washington. Mary­land is com­pet­ing with Vir­ginia to land the agency and its es­ti­mated 10,000 head­quar­ters jobs.

Mary­land of­fi­cials have fo­cused on sites in Green­belt, near In­ter­state 95, the Cap­i­tal Belt­way and Metro and MARC train stops, and Lan­dover.

In June, Gov. Larry Hogan of­fered $317 mil­lion in in­fra­struc­ture and traf­fic im­prove­ments to ac­com­mo­date a new head­quar­ters in Green­belt. He of­fered $255 mil­lion for the Lan­dover site, which would re­quire fewer im­prove­ments.

William Bran­iff is ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor of the Na­tional Con­sor­tium for the Study of Ter­ror­ism and Re­sponses to Ter­ror­ism, which is based in Col­lege Park.

“It’s re­ally exciting to think about a place where you, at the wa­ter cooler, are just as likely to walk into the su­per­vi­sory spe­cial agent run­ning one of the coun­tert­er­ror­ism units out of Bal­ti­more and the un­der­grad­u­ate stu­dent work­ing on an in­tern­ship,” he said.

The part­ner­ship would bring to bear Col­lege Park’s ex­per­tise in crim­i­nol­ogy and coun­tert­er­ror­ism and the Bal­ti­more school’s spe­cial­ties in law, cy­ber­se­cu­rity and tech­nol­ogy.

The academy would also of­fer in­struc­tion to FBI agents, fa­cil­i­tate in­tern­ships for stu­dents, and fos­ter re­search be­tween stu­dents and pro­fes­sion­als.

“One-stop shop­ping,” Bran­iff said. “All these peo­ple would be in the same space for re­search, for ed­u­ca­tion, for in­tern­ships. The FBI could re­cruit and cul­ti­vate and nur­ture those re­la­tion­ships.”

Green­belt and Lan­dover are two of the three fi­nal­ists to build the new head­quar­ters. The third is in North­ern Vir­ginia.

The Gen­eral Ser­vices Ad­min­is­tra­tion, the fed­eral gov­ern­ment’s real es­tate arm, will se­lect the lo­ca­tion.

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