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The IWP Internship Experience: Sean Honesty

Sean HonestyThis semester, I had the opportunity to conduct research under IWP’s founder and president, Dr. John Lenczowksi. My research focused on policy recommendations the United States should pursue to counter and combat the multi-faceted and deep-set practices enacted by the Chinese Communist Party. Additionally, I assisted Dr. Lenczowksi with one of his side research projects, which concentrated on the lingering effects of Soviet propaganda. The goal of this project was to disseminate the most compelling arguments against this kind of information warfare to ultimately inform and equip individuals to recognize and reject this subversive effort.

I also had the pleasure of working with Ms. Gloria Shunda, Executive Assistant to Dr. Lenczowksi. Aiding her with administrative projects and tasks helped me appreciate the behind-the-scenes work that allows the Institute to run smoothly and efficiently. Ensuring that every aspect of IWP’s outreach initiatives and internal organization is effectively managed remains one of the reasons why the Institute stands out in providing its community members – even its interns – with the highest quality programs.

During my time as an intern at IWP, I had the opportunity to participate in several extracurricular activities beyond the traditional internship duties. These activities included the Baltic Storm wargame simulation hosted by Waymark Intelligence Solutions, LLC and the ISIS Crisis Matrix Game led by Professor Aaron Danis in conjunction with his course, Violent Non-State Actors in Today’s Security Environment. Both of these simulations helped hone my interest in national security conflict management as well as developed my skillset in intelligence gathering and teamwork.

While the internship was virtual due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it did little to detract from my overall experience. From lecture lunches with staff and to auditing courses, IWP opened the door for my fellow interns and me to get a sense of the rigor of graduate school coupled with the ability to dive deeper into a field we love.

After completing my undergraduate degree in the spring of 2020, I wanted something that would not only prepare me for a career in national security but also educate me on the best ways to stand out in that career field. This internship has done just that and so much more. I am truly humbled to have participated in the program this semester, as it has better equipped me for the road ahead. I would not hesitate to recommend this experience to anyone looking to better themselves for a life of public service.

Learn more about IWP internships