In 1998, “MGT-313 Incident Management / Unified Command for Terrorism / CBRNE Incidents” was one of the first grant-funded courses offered by TEEX and its National Emergency Response and Rescue Training Center (NERRTC) as part of the new National Domestic Preparedness Consortium. Now the course has added another credential to its portfolio: it has been recertified as a blended learning course offered through the DHS/FEMA Homeland Security National Training Program.
Over a 13-year lifespan, which includes more than 26,000 alumni nationwide, the MGT 313 course has transitioned from a lecture-based course discussing vital tactics for managing terrorism incidents. Today it is a broad-based discussion of the strategic processes for managing all-hazards — large-scale and/or expanding incidents — through classroom activities, case studies and facilitated group discussions, said Jason Moats, Training Manager for Incident Management Programs with TEEX’s Emergency Services Training Institute. The 2007 Greensburg, KS, tornado is used as a case study and participants complete a role-playing exercise involving a large-scale mock incident in their local community.
Recently, the course transitioned again in response to a national needs assessment and requests from the response community to shorten the time spent in the classroom without losing the course’s ICS 300 equivalency. The solution was to provide part of the curriculum online, Moats said. Before a participant heads into the classroom, he or she spends about 4 hours online reviewing ICS 100 and 200, emergency preparedness planning and the basics of terrorism and threat assessment. The result is that the classroom hours have been cut from 24 to 16, and even includes a new pre- and post-test required by DHS/FEMA. To save even more time, the online registration process has been streamlined.
The first pilot of the new course was well-received when it was delivered in California, Moats said. “Besides reducing the participants’ time away from work, the new format will also reduce our instructors’ travel costs, which means we can deliver more courses for the same cost. Yet we will still be meeting the needs of our customers. This will enhance the viability of the MGT-313 course for another 3-5 years, making it one of the longest running and most successful courses in the DHS National Training and Education Division catalog.”