IWP has an extremely diverse student makeup. Our students include: recent college graduates; personnel from foreign affairs, intelligence, defense and commercial agencies of the
Below are stories of some of the students and alums who chose IWP:
"What IWP offers is unique: it provides professionals in the field with real and useful information. The curriculum is based less on academic theories and more on practical information that is relevant, critical and timely in today's world."
IWP views cultural diplomacy as a serious instrument of statecraft, and student Ben Fricke understands this concept from firsthand experience. He participated in his first international exchange program to England when he was 10.
"My experience at IWP was phenomenal. As a strategist, I always look for how this course or this educational opportunity will improve or enhance my capabilities for the type of work that I do. The classes opened up my strategic understanding to the use of other elements of national power than hard power. At IWP, I was exposed to the numerous advantages of the employment of soft power."
My intention was only to take one or two IWP classes in order to bolster my intelligence credentials for a Senior Executive Service level position. However, I learned so much and was so inspired by professors like both deGraffenreids, Eugene Poteat and Dr. Thomas, that I ended up taking six courses, earning a certificate and serving on the first student council.
It is not often that a student's paper will catch the attention of a high-ranking military officer - but this is the type of thing that can happen at IWP.
Upon reading a paper by Adam MacAllister written for Dr. Chodakiewicz's class in Small Wars Journal (http://smallwarsjournal.com/jrnl/art/unnecessary-evil), then Brigadier General H.R. McMaster, chosen by General David Petraeus to be the top counter-corruption official in Afghanistan, wanted to hire the author.
"Coming to IWP, I was able to deepen my international exposure while also pursuing one of my dreams: to live in and more intimately learn about the United States. Hailing from France, I have developed in-depth knowledge about America's political system, foreign policy instruments, and intelligence and military capabilities."
"Hillsdale taught me why the American idea is worth protecting. Here at IWP, we learn that as well, but we also learn how to protect our country."
IWP student Lennea Mueller grew up in South Dakota, where she studied political science and criminal justice at Northern State University. She worked for Senator Tim Johnson from South Dakota and the State House Majority Leader, but she knew she wanted to move to D.C. and work in national security after she interned at the State Department's Bureau of Political and Military Affairs.
It was in the Souk of Damascus, in front of the oldest ice cream shop in the world. Pictures of Sheik Nasrallah and other Hezbollah propaganda were everywhere. Future IWP student "David"(Name changed for security purposes) was enjoying the ice cream and asking Hezbollah supporters about their views on Bashar al-Assad, and whether they had been in Lebanon during the 2006 war. He used a pseudonym then, too.
After graduating with his BA in Political Science from Benedictine College in Kansas this past May, Joe Humphrey started preparing for his career in national security and international affairs. He enrolled in IWP's master's degree program in Statecraft and National Security Affairs, and he took an internship with the Senate Republican Policy Committee.
IWP student Joe Pauloski grew up in Pennsylvania, and never considered a career in international affairs until he took a class on this topic at DeSales University. He was fascinated by the complex, evolving web of relationships between different countries, peoples, and cultures.
IWP student MAJ David Ray Pate, USA has always been a patriot. More than that, however, he has combined his academic work and Army training with old-fashioned good judgment to make a difference in Iraq. Now, as he nears the completion of his education at IWP, he's looking forward to new challenges that he's sure the Army will give him.
Michelle Watson Roscitt has traveled the world and negotiated complex global contracts with corporations and foreign governments. She is now pursuing her Master's degree at IWP.
Steve was interested in politics and national security for many years, but, "The entire concept of statecraft was an abstract idea to me prior to studying at IWP." At the Institute, though, he found that "all of the classes revolve in some way around that strategic concept.... It became clear to me early on at IWP that America's national security would be better served if the foreign policy community would utilize equally all the tools of statecraft."
During his time at IWP, Josh not only had a classroom learning experience, he took the opportunity for an internship with the State Department's Diplomatic Security Service. "This internship allowed me the chance to see the real-world application of the information I learned, and continue to learn, at IWP."
"I leave IWP knowing that I am ready for real-world experience. I plan to use my past positions to transition into a career in intelligence operations for the government. I have ambitions to be active in the field, traveling and living abroad and representing the US government to the best of my abilities."
"IWP will have an immense impact on my Army career. The professors are truly a fountain of knowledge. I can see myself e-mailing them years from now looking for advice. I cannot believe how much I have learned in only nine months, and how much I did not know about the world before beginning this program."
"I wanted to explore my intellectual passions, connect and network, and gather specialized knowledge from experts and practitioners in the security and policy areas. Whenever I enroll in a class at IWP, I always make sure to get to know my fellow students. In just one semester here, I have grown in terms of who I am and what type of person I want to be."
"I found that the internship cemented my calling to get a degree in statecraft and national security - it really engaged my background and personal interest in history and political science."
If you met the young and unassuming IWP student Mike Webber, you might not guess that he has already overseen 50 employees and a million dollar budget, traveled the world, and interned at the State Department, Department of Defense, and the UN. You would easily discover, however, that Mike loves to learn, particularly about history, international affairs, the military, and diplomacy.
"I became interested in intelligence and national security while attending Fayetteville State University as an undergraduate student of political science. Towards the end of my senior year, I realized I wanted to pursue a career in the Intelligence Community (IC) and began looking for schools offering a Master's degree in Strategic Intelligence Studies. IWP was one of the very few schools that came up as an answer to my Google search for this type of degree."
Cassandra Bales has always had a passion for international relations and diplomacy. After two years at Cottey College in Missouri, where she was in the top ten of her class, Cassandra majored in international relations at the College of Notre Dame of Maryland, which is located in Baltimore. She graduated summa cum laude.
Cyber-security is among today's most critical national security issues. Fortunately for the United States, cyber-security is precisely where the passion and talents of IWP alumnus Robert Jones* rest. His accomplishments at the Department of Defense have led to official recognition by the Department for his "patriotic attitude and eagerness to ensure that his abilities are fully leveraged for the greatest possible good of the nation."
IWP student Jubal Biggs brings a wealth of experience to his studies at IWP - he has fought terrorism in the Middle East even before 9/11, run for City Council in California, studied in Israel, and worked on Capitol Hill.
It was in London that Reed was first exposed to international affairs. There, he found himself immersed in the details of international water policy, exploring water conservation efforts in the UK, international piping regulations in Europe and the Middle East, and other related issues. This experience drove him to develop an interest in the complex and highly interconnected world of international relations and security.
Dr. Lenczowski didn't necessarily have entrepreneurship in mind when he founded IWP, but apparently he succeeded in the case of one IWP student. Irene Karedis, after attending Dr. Waller's Public Diplomacy and Political Warfare class, was so inspired by the discussion about communicating to people through images, that, in April 2008, she founded her own graphic design company.
Chris was working on a double major in history and political science, but considered his love of these subjects as more of a hobby than a professional interest. After attending IWP, this hobby has become his full-time job, and Chris is able to pursue his interests in his day-to-day work.
2008 alumnus Aaron Linderman attended IWP with the intent of continuing a career in academia and thereby spreading the mission of IWP further in the intellectual community. He found that his studies at the Institute were excellent preparation not only for his pursuit of a Ph.D. in history but also for his career as a professor.
IWP student William Stiles* always knew he wanted to go into the field of intelligence, but did not know how to go about achieving this goal. While in Italy, he learned of IWP, and saw that the classes offered at this institution were directly applicable to what he wanted to accomplish professionally.
Executive Vice President of International Operations, Paladin 7: Kemal Okudo
Imagine this for a moment - you leave your highly successful job, you move yourself and your family of four children to another country, and you liquidate some of your assets to live - all to go to a graduate school. That is what 2009 IWP valedictorian Kemal Okudo did - and for him, it was worth it.
Ali Filipowicz, a 2009 graduate of IWP, is looking forward to a career in national security. Having also graduated from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service in 2006, she understands the uniqueness and practicality of the IWP education.
Jim Dolbow, whose many professional activities include service as a defense policy analyst and Coast Guard Reserve officer, recently told us: "What I learned here at IWP is going to be with me for the rest of my life. I am truly grateful to the friends and supporters of IWP who have made this possible for me - I am forever in their debt."
Bill Elliott joined the United States Navy following graduation from the Institute, and is now an intelligence officer for a naval aviation squadron currently stationed in San Diego. He observes that IWP prepared him well for his professional life: "The Institute's emphasis on geopolitical events and strategic intelligence is directly used in my day-to-day job and in serving the intelligence community and armed services."
Upon graduating from
*Name changed for security purposes