Dear Class of 2021:

Congratulations on your selection to attend the College of International Security Affairs at the National Defense University!  Please read the welcome note from our acting Chancellor, Ambassador Erica Barks-Ruggles. For more information, visit the National Defense University's incoming student page



Reporting Instructions

CISA students should report to on Monday, 03 2020.  More information will be sent out via email regarding student orientation: 

Convocation and the CISA Orientation will take place from Aug 04-07 (TBD). The schedule of events for those days will be provided on Monday 03 August.


The College of International Security Affairs (CISA) is located in Lincoln Hall at Fort Lesley J. McNair, 300 5th Avenue, Washington, DC 20319. Parking is available immediately in front of Lincoln Hall. The visitor's gate on 2nd Street SW is open 24/7. All vehicular traffic onto base MUST use this gate to access Fort McNair.

ID REQUIREMENTS: A federal or state government-issued photo ID with biographic information such as name, date of birth, gender, and address is required. For complete driving or metro directions, click here.

For planning purposes for the first week, you should expect to be in session from 0830-1630 each day.

Base Access

MAIN GATE/CEREMONIAL GATE: The main gate on P Street SW will only have the pedestrian gate open to Fort McNair residents and DoD ID card holders requiring 24/7 JFHQ-NCR-MDW mission access. 

ABRAHAM LINCOLN HALL: Following in-processing, you will be issued an NDU Badge which will give you access to Abraham Lincoln Hall (CISA location).  **Note: If you are visiting prior to 6 August, you will need to provide military or government ID at the entrance and provide the name of your point of contact.

Check-In Information

Army: Contact CISA Army Service Chair,  LTC Dave Oakley at david.p.oakley.mil@msc.ndu.edu prior to signing out of your closing command. Duty uniform is Class B.  Army students will meet with LTC Oakley during the first week of the academic year; schedule TBD. 

Air Force: Contact CISA Air Force Service Chair, Colonel Laurie Reifsteck at  laurinda.m.reifsteck.mil@msc.ndu.edu prior to signing out of your closing command. Uniform is short sleeve blue shirt.

All Sea Services: Contact CISA Sea Service Chair, CDR Randolph Chestang at  randolph.chestang.mil@msc.ndu.edu.

DoD Civilians: Not required to sign-in until the first day of in-processing on Monday 03 August. Dress code for in-processing is business.

Non-DOD Civilians: Contact Sheila DeTurk, Director of Student Academic Affairs, for any additional information or concerns relating to reporting instructions at (202) 685-7784 or Sheila.deturk@ndu.edu.

Information Technology

All students should bring their own laptops. CISA suggests the following devices:

  • Laptop not older than 2-3 years, OS Windows 7,8,10, OS X El Capitan or later
    • Please be aware that devices bought in foreign countries may not work on the NDU wireless network. If you are living outside the U.S., it is highly recommended that you wait to purchase a laptop until you arrive in the US.
  • Tablets, such as iPads and Microsoft Surface devices.
    • Please note that assignment formatting functionality will be limited on tablet operating systems- such as the iPad's iOS Version 9.3.1, or Microsoft Windows RT 8 (used on many Surface tablets & other laptops). The Microsoft Office applications for tablets do not have full formatting functionality needed for student papers and the thesis.
    • On Windows RT 8, certain eBooks are not downloadable, since Adobe Digital Editions cannot be downloaded and installed using that operating system.
    • Tablets are acceptable for daily classroom use, but a laptop or desktop computer are needed for certain occasions, such as assignment submission.
    • Computers are available for use (CAC access only) in the NDU Library, located in Marshall Hall on the second floor.

Most modern tablets running either Android or Apple iOS will be able to connect to the campus wireless network.

NDU has a wireless network, and a secure enterprise wired network. Students will receive a wireless network account allowing their use of their devices throughout the school and library. Students can request accounts to access the wired enterprise network. The library’s .mil cafĂ© is open to students who need access to restricted .mil domains.

Students should bring their relatively new laptop or tablet to the In-Processing in August. Word processing will be available through the Microsoft Office365 platform. NDU recommends student devices be loaded with Microsoft Office or Open Office to allow for offline work, however it should be noted that MS Office is strongly preferred. Students should also protect their personal devices with anti-virus software appropriate for their device.

More information about the NDU technology and computing environment is available on the NDU Incoming Students Web site.