Stephanie La Rue, chief of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), visited FIU last month to meet with students and discuss Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) efforts in the U.S. intelligence community as well as how academia can help diverse students enter the national security workforce.
La Rue’s visit follows the Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines’ visit to FIU, where she highlighted the existing talent and interest in bringing FIU students into the intelligence community.
The U.S. intelligence community (IC) is a group of separate government intelligence agencies and subordinate organizations that work separately and together to conduct intelligence activities that support the foreign policy and national security of the United States. Member organizations include intelligence agencies, military intelligence and civilian intelligence and analysis offices within federal executive departments.
La Rue's visit included a fireside chat with FIU’s Vice Provost for DEI El pagnier Kay “EK” Hudson; Carleen Vincent-Robinson, assistant dean at the Steven J. Green School of International Public Affairs and faculty fellow for social justice and inclusion and student access and success; and Brian Fonseca, director of the Jack D. Gordon Institute for Public Policy, as the moderator.
La Rue emphasized the importance of building an IC that represents the country as a whole and how FIU’s workforce development programs are helping achieve that goal.
“Programs like this. People, officers, educators and mentors like you all have here [at FIU]. You are part of the solution to make sure that we do have an intelligence community that reflects a country that we’re here to serve,” she said to students. “The American people deserve an intelligence community that reflects our country.”
Before the chat, La Rue had a private social engagement with students in FIU’s Intelligence Community Centers for Academic Excellence IC-CAE Intelligence Fellowship Program.
Led by the Jack D. Gordon Institute for Public Policy, the IC-CAE intelligence fellowship is a one-year workforce development program that prepares students to be the next generation of intelligence professionals. FIU was one of four pilot institutions designated as an IC-CAE school by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence in 2005.
The program provides unique coursework, research opportunities, internships, one-on-one mentorship with former intelligence professionals, and exclusive networking events with recruiters and other current members of the intelligence community. In addition to the internships given to students during the program, roughly 80% of students receive a conditional offer of employment right after completing their program.
“We’ve been doing this program for several years,” said Hector Cadavid, deputy director of the Jack D. Gordon Institute for Public Policy. “It's no surprise that we're top in class because we put a lot of thought and intentionality into our processes.”