Student Profile

Joseph Funderburke

West Point Graduate Joseph Funderburke is an active duty Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Army. He holds a master’s degree in Legislative Affairs from George Washington University and a second master’s in National Security and Strategic Studies from Naval War College. He is excited to be part of the inaugural class for UCF’s Security Studies PhD program. “A lot of people might shy away from a first-year program,” says Funderburke, “but I saw it as an opportunity to shape the development of the program, and I knew that the faculty would be highly motivated.” One of the aspects of the program that he appreciates is the small cohort size which allows students to get to know their colleagues. He enjoys the variety of experiences which they bring to the table and the diverse perspectives that they share. The professors are also knowledgeable and student-focused.

A military strategist, Funderburke has experience working for all levels of government from the Chief of Staff of the Army to serving as a Congressional Fellow. His goal upon completing his doctorate is to work for the National Security Staff or for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. Funderburke’s research interests focus on national security and national defense issues; in particular, how senior leaders frame the situations they encounter and what influences them in their decision-making process. Understanding the factors in the decision-making process, he hopes will lead to better decisions. 

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