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National Security Fellowship Graduate Research Opportunity

The National Security Graduate Fellowship at the School of Diplomacy is a unique, experiential learning opportunity whereby students engage in a comprehensive research project led by Seton Hall University alumnus Mohamad Mirghahari, a former Presidential Appointee under the Obama Administration at the Transportation Security Agency of the Department of Homeland Security and former Department of Defense official. Professor Mirghahari currently serves as a Special Advisor to the Department of Defense.

Each year, Professor Mirghahari leads a research team of School of Diplomacy and International Relations graduate students to support a mission requirement provided by one of the vital agencies of the U.S. government: Department of State, Department of Defense, or the White House. The students complete an operational research paper recommending solutions to some of the U.S. government's most challenging foreign policy problems. They present their findings to U.S. government officials in the requesting agency. Their findings are then circulated among the department and other agencies in the intelligence community.

This program serves as one of the ways that the School of Diplomacy helps to solve prescient international challenges and make a difference in the global community. In addition to the practical opportunities that the program provides to students, the research serves a function needed by the government and has practical policy impact on U.S. foreign policy. The program has also helped to expose and greatly enhance the reputation of the School in the public sector, allowing us to compete with the elite Washington, D.C. schools.

The student researchers demonstrate their ability to analyze geopolitical threats and opportunities, identify U.S. objectives, to develop and present an operational policy. This practical application of the theory learned in the classroom, as well as the writing, public speaking and presentation skills gained through this research development program are excellent professional development tools for students. The researchers are also provided unique one-on-one informational interviews with current and former U.S. government officials in their areas of career interest.

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Mohamad Mirghahari
Tom and Ruth Sharkey
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