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Syracuse University, College of Arts and Sciences

Forensic and National Security Sciences Institute (FNSSI)

women wearing Covid mask looking through microscope

Every contact leaves a trace."

Edmond Locard

The Forensic and National Security Sciences Institute (FNSSI) is a national education and research institution where you can take your first steps towards a career at the nexus of science, criminal investigation and national security.

One-on-one advising helps you design a course of study appropriate for your specific career goals. For example, if you are interested in a career in national security sciences, the program can be tailored to suit your career goals with additional courses in political science and law.

Your studies can span the fields of anthropology, biochemistry, biology, chemistry, computer science, earth sciences, physics, psychology and sociology. You will benefit from diverse coursework, real-world field experiences and extensive lab resources.

Over 90% of FNSSI employed graduates are working in an area related to their field of study."

Program highlights:

  • FEPAC accredited M.S. in Forensic Science – Advanced track.
  • Specialized courses and exposure to current practices and theories taught by active researchers and practitioners in forensic science and national security.
  • A growing number of institutional partnerships, and close proximity to the Onondaga County Wallie Howard Jr. Center for Forensic Sciences, and numerous relationships with local and federal forensic organizations.
  • Hands-on internship experiences possible at laboratories such as the Onondaga County Center for Forensic Sciences, the Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office, the New York City Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, FBI, and in industry with companies such as NicheVision Forensics and other federal, state, or local agencies and corporations.
  • Emphasis on student participation in laboratory research, with opportunities to present and publish original research projects.

FNSSI provides leadership, training and research for highly qualified science practitioners with exceptional scientific skills, legal and political understanding and ethical practices.

Syracuse is uniquely poised among universities to provide the comprehensive leadership and expertise needed to combat global terrorism, promote security and support criminal forensic science.

What can I do with my forensics degree?

FNSSI programs prepare students for analyst positions in crime laboratories, private companies and federal agencies. Positions may include:

  • Forensic DNA Analyst
  • Certified Latent Print Examiner
  • Crime Scene Investigator
  • Medicolegal Death Investigator
  • Firearms and Tool marks Examiner
  • Forensic Chemist
  • Forensic Toxicologist


Bringing CSI into the Classroom

posted on: May 23, 2022

Students in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Advanced Crime Scene Investigation class gain valuable hands-on skills to prepare them for a career in forensics.