As an undergrad, I often second-guessed my decision to work in Intelligence Analysis because I desired further guidance on how to become a better applicant, and, as I was approaching my final semester of college, I knew that I needed a respected internship to open doors in the right direction. Nonetheless, speaking with my professor at George Mason University, Professor Dennis Staszak, led me to IWP. Professor Staszak is an IWP alumnus, and he is an esteemed professor at GMU. His support for IWP made me very interested in the institution. He offered extra credit to visit IWP’s booth at our university career fair, as he does every semester, and I am thankful that he did. After speaking with the fantastic recruiters from IWP, I applied and was accepted to the Institute’s internship program.
From the start of the internship, I was immediately welcomed at IWP. All the faculty and staff were incredible, helpful, and kind in countless ways. I was given many opportunities to network because, being present at IWP regularly, one gets to encounter many respected experts and professionals, and the staff was more than helpful in assisting me to connect and meet with them. This was a valuable experience for me because it allowed me to further understand the Intelligence Community and to which areas I would like to contribute.
Additionally, being a part of the Counterterrorism research team and working with Professor Danis taught me many lessons. As a team, we contributed to developing a reality-based analytical wargame that will assist in the hands-on learning process in the Counterterrorism curriculum at IWP. Additionally, I was able to audit Professor Danis’ Counterterrorism and the Democracies course, where it was essential for me to provide detailed analysis briefings concerning terrorism and counterterrorist efforts. The CT team at IWP has not only assured me of my desired career — being an analyst in Counterterrorism — it has also allowed me to grow in essential skills that I will need in the workplace such as researching, writing assessments, and verbally discussing terror events around the world.
IWP is a great place to grow in essential skills, network through countless opportunities, and be part of the most kind-hearted and helpful team. For the couple of years prior to my internship, I was anxious about what was to come after my graduation. Being a part of the IWP family for only a few months, however, equipped me with valuable skills that I will use for the rest of my career. I look forward to coming back for my Master’s degree at The Institute of World Politics.