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The IWP Internship Experience: Frank Mariscal

Frank Marsical

My time as an intern at The Institute of World Politics has been unique thus far. In addition to assisting in general staff duties, or helping in the Skybox (IWP’s Events and Communications Office), the highlight of my experience has been working with the Counterterrorism Research team.

I entered the internship thinking I was simply going to be a part of a research team investigating terrorist incidents, but the experience turned into something far greater than I could have imagined. I had multiple opportunities to present analytical products relating to terrorist tactics, threats, profiles, after-action reports, and risk assessments. These analytical products, coupled with guidance from the team coordinators, have enabled me to learn how properly to format Intelligence reports, how to use National Intelligence Estimate terminology, and how to maintain a security-oriented mindset in everything I do. Additionally, I accrued extensive communication and public speaking skills while briefing my products/presentations.

The wealth of knowledge and experience provided from our Head Team Coordinator, Derrick Dortch, has contributed to our development as young professionals in the realm of national security. For instance, Derrick provided us the opportunity to attend an exclusive DIA event, booked CIA interview sessions for us, and continually passed down wisdom and unique guidance on our unique career development paths.

As I finish my time at IWP and graduate from American University in D.C., I’m excited for what the future holds for me. I plan to graduate from American University in May 2018 with a BA in International Relations. I am also commissioning into the U.S. Army as a Military Intelligence 2ND Lieutenant Officer in May. I aspire to work in the Intelligence Community, while pursuing a Law Enforcement opportunity first to gain hands-on experience in operations on the ground. All my internship coordinators, advisors, and peers at IWP have contributed to my development as an aspiring national security professional and have further confirmed my passion to serve my city and nation.

I’m extremely thankful for the opportunities in the internship program, and for Adam Smith’s coordination efforts and keen eye for recruitment. I will be looking into potential graduate school attendance at IWP soon, once I acquire some real-life experience. I’m even more honored to know that the Counterterrorism team is looking for active/part-time workers throughout the summer. I have graciously accepted the opportunity to assist in team leading and continued research in counterterrorism this summer 2018, while I am away continuing my Army training.