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The IWP Internship Experience: Ingrid Fontes

As a Junior college student, the internship program at IWP was brought to my attention after I attended an Open House event, where, after attending it, I knew that such an experience would give me exposure to professional opportunities within the national security sphere. That was exactly what happened.

IWP has exposed me to experts within the statecraft field that I wouldn’t have otherwise met. There were opportunities for personal and professional growth through networking and career development meetings. Being able to have one-on-one meetings with Derrick Dortch has expanded my techniques for applying for internships and future jobs. He also described how to apply to jobs within the statecraft world. My individual meetings with him have given me an insight into my areas of interest.

Working alongside the events team has given me insights on how to plan, help, and manage an event, regardless of the number of attendees. Being able to tour the Pentagon with IWP alumni has been one of my favorite moments, as it provided IWP interns with a small panel of current practitioners working at the Pentagon who were also IWP alumni. That opportunity wouldn’t have happened without a connection with IWP, where they value personal interactions with professionals in the field.

Additionally, I worked closely with Prof. Aaron Danis and my research team on a war game called “The Second Wave,” and we plan to attend the Connections Wargaming Conference in August. My research team and this project have helped me be certain that one of my areas of interest is Counterintelligence.

I am currently going into my second semester of Junior year at American University feeling more prepared to apply for internships and jobs in the field. The kind and caring IWP staff always reaches out and introduces themselves, and everyone has contributed to a successful spring internship program.

Ingrid Fontes
Spring 2020

Learn more about IWP internships