Arts & Humanities

USU Launches Nation's First Master of Anticipatory Intelligence Degree Program

By Andrea DeHaan |

Video by Taylor Emerson, Digital Journalist, University Marketing & Communications

LOGAN — The Center for Anticipatory Intelligence (CAI) at Utah State University has launched the first graduate degree program of its kind in the country. The Master of Anticipatory Intelligence (MAI) will prepare students from a variety of disciplines to anticipate and respond to emerging security threats across a range of fields and industries.

"At its heart, the Master of Anticipatory Intelligence is about preparing future leaders to successfully navigate and operate in an increasingly complex world that's rife with unprecedented challenges and opportunities,” CAI Associate Director Briana Bowen said. “MAI grads will be equipped to be strategic thinkers in key decision roles across both the private and public sectors."

The interdisciplinary, cross-college MAI program will combine anticipatory intelligence coursework with applied emphases in international security, cyber & security analytics, biosecurity and geographic information sciences to prepare graduates with the analytic and applied skills needed to address security risks in the modern world.

USU’s center is the first lab school for anticipatory intelligence in the nation and already offers a minor and graduate certificate. Since its inception in 2018, CAI has attracted the attention of higher education and tech industry leaders alike.

“In the years since we launched the center, we’ve seen how this program helps light up interest among employers in our students. We anticipate that our MAI — the nation’s first — will do the same,” said Matt Berrett, director of analytics for the Space Dynamics Laboratory and CAI co-founder alongside Bowen and Founding Director Jeannie Johnson.

In 2021, USU’s CAI and Utah Valley University’s Center for National Security Studies received $5 million from the state’s Deep Technology Talent Initiative to increase training opportunities for Utah’s technical workforce. The new master’s program is part of CAI’s commitment to creating educational pathways for students interested in security-related professions. “If you can find a program that performs better at broadening a political science or engineering or finance major’s grasp of the actors and factors that will determine the world’s future, buy it. We think employers will like MAI grads and their emphases even more than they’re liking our undergrad and professional participants,” Berrett said.

Housed within the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, CAI works with students from all eight colleges representing more than 45 majors and disciplines. Recent graduates now work for a wide range of public and private industries, covering problem sets ranging from nuclear issues at the U.S. Department of Energy to intellectual property defense at Strider Technologies.

Alum Brigitte Hugh, a member of CAI’s first undergraduate cohort, is a research fellow for the Center for Climate and Security, an institute of the Council on Strategic Risks.

“Hearing about the new Master’s of Anticipatory Intelligence has awakened a little green monster of jealousy inside me, and I’m sure I’m not the only one,” Hugh said. “I am pretty well established in my field, yet I’m tempted every day to go back and take some of the classes now being offered by CAI.”

Scott Roberts is a working professional minoring in anticipatory intelligence while finishing his integrated studies degree at USU.

“After working in information security for almost 20 years, we’ve solved many of the bits-and-bytes technical problems, and what’s left are the harder problems at the edge,” said Roberts, who plans to apply to the MAI. “I think the breadth and depth (of) the MAI will … prepare me for the next phase of my career.”

CAI is currently accepting applications for its first cohort of master’s students. The deadline for the regular application season is March 31, 2023, and there is an accelerated option for undergraduates already minoring in anticipatory intelligence. Those seeking more information to apply are encouraged to visit


Andrea DeHaan
Communications Editor
College of Humanities and Social Sciences


Jeannie Johnson
Founding Director
Center for Anticipatory Intelligence


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