Undergraduate Special Academic Opportunities

Center for Computer Security and Information Assurance

The Center for Computer Security and Information Assurance, housed within the Department of Computer Science, coordinates and promotes inter-disciplinary research, education, and service projects in computer security and information assurance. Center activities bring together faculty, students, researchers, government and industry computer security experts, and law enforcement practitioners to share information and develop new ways to protect users, information systems, and information infrastructures. The Center currently offers a graduate Certificate in Cybersecurity. The Center’s web site is located at: ccsia.hood.edu.

4Plus - Undergraduate/Graduate Dual Degree Programs

The 4Plus undergraduate/graduate dual degree programs allow students in most cases to complete both the bachelor’s and master’s degrees in an accelerated format.

The MBA degree is available to students from any undergraduate major who complete the recommended coursework (typically foundation courses) during the final 2-3 semesters of their undergraduate degree, often allowing the MBA to be earned with just one additional year of study. 

Some master’s degree programs allow undergraduate students to complete master’s degrees in a shortened time by permitting up to nine (9) credits of graduate coursework to be applied towards both degrees (bachelor’s and master’s). A minimum grade of B in graduate coursework is required for transfer to a graduate program. Current programs available for this option are:

Students should consult with their academic advisor and the graduate program director by their sophomore year for more information and accurate schedule planning. A minimum undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for consideration into the 4Plus program path.

Coastal Studies Semester

See Coastal Studies Semester for more information.

Departmental Honors Paper

The Departmental Honors Paper is a senior-year program designed for students who wish to pursue intensive research or special projects in close coordination with faculty advisors. The course number 499 designates this type of study. Students writing Departmental Honors Papers are designated Christine P. Tischer Scholars.

See About Course Offerings for more information.

Military Science/ROTC

Hood College offers the U.S. Army Reserve Officers’ Training Program (ROTC) in association with the Military Science Department of McDaniel College. See Course Offerings for more information.

Study Abroad Programs

Hood students may study abroad in approved programs in virtually every part of the world. All students intending overseas study should make application at least one year in advance of the proposed study. Students should consult with the Hood College Study Abroad Coordinator located in the Catherine Filene Shouse Center for Career Development and Experiential Education as soon as they determine they wish to study abroad.

The College encourages students to study abroad during the junior year. Some sophomores study abroad because of compelling program or personal reasons, and in rare instances the College permits seniors to study abroad in the fall semester.

The College requires language majors to study abroad unless they reside for two years in one of the language houses. Language students ordinarily enroll in programs abroad that offer instruction in the local language. Hood has formal associations with a number of established overseas programs, including those offered by CIEE, CAPA, CCIS, Junior Year France (Paris),  and the University of Mainz, among others.

Students may also study abroad in short-term summer programs organized by Hood faculty.

Grades received through Hood-affiliated semester or year abroad programs are calculated in the Hood GPA. Students participating in non-Hood affiliated semester or year abroad programs will earn transfer credit only for all courses completed with a grade of C- or above.

The Hood College Honors Program

A limited number of academically exceptional students are accepted into the Hood College Honors Program. Combining classroom instruction and co-curricular activities, the Honors Program offers a challenging academic experience and encourages both independent and collaborative learning. The program requirements are discussed in Majors and Courses of Study.

Off-Campus Programs and Courses


Hood College encourages our female students to participate in the Public Leadership Education Network. PLEN offers exciting programs that allow Hood students to gain firsthand experience shaping public policy in communities, the nation and the world. Students who enroll in PLEN’s Women and Public Policy Internship Program learn about policy, research or social advocacy by working alongside women leaders in the Congress, courts, executive agencies and nongovernmental advocacy groups. Students may earn from 3 to 15 Hood College credits for participation in PLEN’s internship programs. Those who wish to complete a PLEN internship must also meet Hood’s requirements for internship eligibility. PLEN also offers three-day to three-week seminars on topics such as Women and Congress; Women in Science and Technology; Women and International Policy; and Women, Law and Public Policy.

For more information about any of PLEN’s programs, contact the Center for Career Development and Experiential Education.

The Washington Center

Hood College partners with The Washington Center, which is an independent, nonprofit organization serving hundreds of colleges and universities in the United States and other countries by providing selected students challenging opportunities to work and learn in Washington, D.C. for academic credit. The Washington Center offers two types of programs: Internships and academic seminars. Internships are semester- or summer-long integrated academic and work experiences in government, corporate and nonprofit organizations. Each internship is tailored to provide meaningful work experiences that will enhance students’ resumes and help launch their careers. This is a “study away” opportunity where students may live in The Washington Center residence apartments. Additionally, students take academic courses and attend special programming during their time at The Washington Center. Academic seminars serve as intensive learning experiences with focus on specific topics, such as National Security, the Presidency, and the Middle East Peace Process. Past seminars have included visits to such locations as Capitol Hill, CNN, the Newseum, embassies and many others. Seminar events have featured such respected speakers as Ted Koppel, Andrea Mitchell, Howard Dean, and others. Students pay Hood tuition and receive Hood financial aid for The Washington Center Program. Credits and grades earned are calculated in the Hood GPA.

For more information and to begin the application process, contact the Center for Career Development and Experiential Education.

Washington Semester Program

Hood College cooperates with American University’s Washington Semester Program, an arrangement that provides priority access to Hood students who join 300 to 400 other students from across the country. Students may enroll in any of the units of the program: American National Politics Semester, Foreign Policy Semester, Justice Semester, Public Law Semester, Economic Policy Semester, Peace and Conflict Resolution Semester, Journalism Semester, Museum Studies and the Arts Semester, International Business and Trade Semester and International Environment and Development Semester. The director and academic advisers of each unit help students plan their programs, including a seminar, an independent research project and either an internship or a course at American University. Entrance requirements include a Grade Point Average of 2.5, second-semester sophomore status, a recommendation from the Hood faculty adviser to the program and selection by the director at American University. Credits (but not quality points) are transferable to Hood. Because financial arrangements for room, board and tuition differ from those at Hood, students are urged to consult with the Hood financial aid officer well in advance. Hood students need not file a petition with the Committee on Academic Standards and Policies to participate in the Washington Semester.

Community College Exchange

Full-time Hood students may take one course each semester at Carroll Community College (CCC) or Hagerstown Community College (HCC) without charge, provided that the course chosen is not offered at Hood during the academic year. See Transfer Policy and Attending Other Institutions for more information on this program.