Graduate Certificate in Disasters, Hazards and Emergency Management

School of Public Affairs


Degree: Graduate Certificate

Classroom Type: Online and on campus classes

This certificate provides advanced education in the management of emergencies, hazards, disasters and community resilience. It is designed for students who work or will work in the field of natural and man-made hazards, community resilience and emergency management.

Application​ deadlines

Fall: August 1; Spring: December 1; Summer: May 1

Program Details

Interest Categories: Criminology & Law Public Administration & Policy

Campus: CU Denver

The Graduate Certificate in Disasters, Hazards, and Emergency Management (DHEM) provides advanced education in the management of emergencies, hazards, disasters, and community resilience. Students completing the DHEM graduate certificate program will have the knowledge and skills necessary to assess and manage a broad range of hazards and disasters, and to understand the policy and managerial environment in which emergency management occurs. Professionals who would like to supplement their work experience with classes in this area may also find the certificate helpful for their professional goals.

The program applies an interdisciplinary approach to education that:

  • Emphasizes high-level skills of critical thinking, learning, adaptation, and policy analysis
  • Focuses on the all-hazards emergency management model (encompassing natural and man-made hazards, such as wildfires, hurricanes, technological or industrial risks), and community resilience.

Review CU Denver's Academic Policies.

Program requirements

  • The Graduate Disasters, Hazards and Emergency Management Certificate requires 12 credit hours of coursework.
  • Students must maintain a minimum GPA of 3.0, with a minimum grade of B- in each course.

Required courses

Students must complete the following course, for a total of 3 credit hours:

  • CRJU 5720/PUAD 5720 - Public Policies for Hazards and Disasters (3 credit hours)

Students must select at least one of the three courses below:

  • CRJU 5650/PUAD 5650 - Public Service in Emergency Management and Homeland Security (3 credit hours)
  • CRJU 5655/PUAD 5655 - Principles of Emergency Management (3 credit hours)
  • URPL 6645 - Disasters and Climate Change Planning (3 credit hours)

All course descriptions can be found in the Graduate Academic Catalog.

Elective courses

Additionally, students must complete elective courses from the list below to reach a total of 12 credits to complete the certificate. 

  • CRJU/PUAD 5644 - Environmental and Hazards Law (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5130 - Collaboration Across Sectors (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5271 - Managing Conflict and Change (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5320 - Public Policy Analysis (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5350 - Program Evaluation (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5440 - Negotiation and Conflict Resolution (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5631 - Seminar in Environmental Politics and Policy (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5632 - Seminar in Environmental Management (3 credit hours)
  • GEOG 5080 - Introduction to GIS (3 credit hours)
  • GEOG 5710 - Disasters, Climate Change, and Health (3 credit hours)

Other electives may be taken with approval from the concentration director. All course descriptions can be found in the Graduate Academic Catalog.

Recommended Completion Time:1 Year

Max Transfer Credits:0

Max Credits Per Year:In most cases, students wishing to take more than 18 credit hours per semester (12 in the summer session) must have the overload approved by the dean.

Required Credits for Completion:12 Credits

Admission Requirements

View the admissions requirements for the School of Public Affairs.