September 20, 2017

John McLaughlin, Distinguished Practitioner-in-Residence at The Philip Merrill Center for Strategic Studies and former acting director of the Central Intelligence Agency

The political environment of Washington, DC presents a special set of challenges for new professionals preparing to launch careers in international relations or the public sector. Professor John McLaughlin shared his insights and advice with students on navigating the federal bureaucracy, succeeding in defense and civil service roles, and how to stay above the partisan fray in the latest installment of his series, Defense Against the Dark Arts.

The off-the-record presentation covered essential skills such as writing policy memos, briefing high level officials, and understanding the working environment at several federal agencies. McLaughlin illustrated his points with personal stories from his long career in public service and even performed several magic tricks that have made the series a perennial favorite among Johns Hopkins SAIS students.