This summer, I had the incredible experience of interning at The Institute of World Politics. I worked on two separate research teams: The Cyber Security Team and The Counter Terrorism team.
On the Cyber Security Team, I worked under the guidance of Dean Lane, Senior Vice President for Cyber Intelligence, and I was able to write a paper about how the U.S. weaponized cyberspace. The paper is set to be published very soon.
On the Counter Terrorism Team, I worked under the guidance of Derrick Dortch and Kelly Zug. The Counter Terrorism team was a truly life-changing experience for me. We worked on real-time problems and dug into the core issues and challenges our country is facing on a national security level. Through this experience, I was able to develop my professional skills, and the team set a new fire in my heart for what I want to do with my life. Derrick Dortch, Director of Career Services, is honestly dedicated to ensuring that all interns, before leaving at the end of the program, have chosen a career direction and that they have been connected to someone in that field who can help propel that career forward.
Aside from the amazing teams I was able to work with, I was also able to audit two graduate-level courses, Cyber Strategy Development and The Role and Importance of HUMINT. Both of these courses have guided me to becoming a well-rounded individual in the areas of national security and international affairs.
Cyber Strategy Development, taught by Prof. Joseph Billingsley, gave me a better understanding of how the DoD and countries all across the world build their cyber defense and development plans. Each week, we had several speakers, varying from the man who headed the team that wrote the new DoD cyber strategy to generals who were there at the establishment of CYBERCOM. In this course, I was able to develop a new Cyber Strategy for the Institute with the intention of it eventually being implemented.
The Role and Importance of HUMINT, taught by Prof. John Sano, was an absolutely incredible course. Professor Sano’s years of field experience and willingness to educate the next generation made the class a delight. From debates on the ethics of spying to understanding asset handling, this course instills an understanding of HUMINT and the world surround it.
Along with educational and professional development, my summer at IWP also allowed me to connect with many professionals. The community within the Institute is always willing to meet with interns and to give advice that they can carry with them for the rest of their lives. Executive Vice President Lawrence Cosgriff and Captain Christopher Glass, Senior Vice President of Professional Affiliations, were willing to meet with me to discuss my career path, real world issues, and my specific focus areas. I was particularly grateful that they were genuinely interested in me as an individual.
While IWP promotes a professional environment, staff and faculty do an amazing job at making sure that interns are interconnected with the community. They really do want to be involved in furthering your career, goals, and professional and personal growth. This summer at IWP has been truly amazing, and I cannot wait to apply to its graduate program in Strategic Intelligence Studies. Thank you to IWP staff, faculty, students, and interns for all of your help this summer and for your relentless efforts in ensuring this was the best one yet!
Special thanks are in order to: Daniel Suitor, Tim Stebbins, Allison Bimber, Adam Sykes, Derrick Dortch, Kelly Zug, Captain Glass, Lawrence Cosgriff, John Sano, Joseph Billingsley, Dean Lane, Kadi Stoffey, Danielle Shover, Summer 2018 Intern Class, and the amazing internship coordinator Adam Smith!
Intern, Summer 2018