The Order of the Sword & Shield
The Order of the Sword and Shield is the first and only academic and professional honor society dedicated exclusively to homeland security, intelligence, emergency management, cyber and information security, and all protective security disciplines. The mission of the Society shall be to promote critical thinking, high scholarship and professional development; to further enhance the ethical standards of the protective security professions; and to cultivate a high order of personal living. In addition to its academic purpose, the Society is strongly committed to helping communities prepare for safety and emergency conditions and sponsors many types of informational events throughout the year.
The Honor Society was established in 2010 on the campuses of St. John's University in New York. It inducted its first members in 2011 and has had an induction class every year since then. The Founding Director, Associate Professor Jeffrey P. Grossmann, serves as the current Executive National Director, and oversees the primary operations of the Society. In an open letter to the industry, Professor Grossmann stated that "together with your support, we will position the Society as the leading resource in academic achievement recognition in the fields of homeland security, intelligence, emergency management, cyber and information security, and all protective studies".
The Core Values of the Society are excellence, knowledge, ethics, and peace.
Our motto is ex scientia pax which means "out of knowledge comes peace". As an association which represents homeland security, intelligence, and protective security academic disciplines, this has special meaning. With an ultimate goal of peace and safety for all, the protective security profession must utilize knowledge as a primary tool for the accomplishment of this objective. The Society recognizes this commitment and the dedication of those individuals achieving academic and professional excellence.
Omicron Sigma Sigma is our Greek name.
We're more than just an honor society...
The Society was created for two reasons. First, over the past several years, a few honor organizations have expanded their scope to include “homeland security” as a secondary discipline (included in some other primary academic field of study). They recognized a gap in "coverage" and sought to fit our growing discipline into their existing model. Although this is an admirable gesture, the fact remains that these organizations were not formed with a focus on homeland security as a dedicated discipline, and as a result, were not properly representing our cause. The Order of the Sword & Shield was created with our specific and unique interests in mind, and remains dedicated to the homeland security, intelligence, emergency management, cyber and information security, and all protective security disciplines, solely (the entire homeland security mission).
Second, we wanted to create a mechanism to allow our best and brightest students to unite, not only from an "academic achievement" standpoint, but from a "service" perspective as well. Giving back to our communities remains a key driver in our operational model. All of our members, chapters, and employees (our entire extended family) are encouraged to volunteer in some form of service-related activity. Again, these ideals did not fit well within other honor organizations. We place a high value on service. Service from a homeland security perspective. We felt then, and still do today, that our academic discipline requires a specific and dedicated honor society. After all, a dedicated honor society is an important part of the formula which makes our discipline a true profession and legitimate academic field of study.