2023 INSF Scholarship Recipients

August 01, 2023

The Intelligence and National Security Foundation (INSF), the philanthropic arm of the Intelligence and National Security Alliance, is pleased to announce the recipients of its 2023 scholarship program. Seven outstanding undergraduate and master's students pursuing careers in intelligence and national security have been awarded a total of $40,000 in scholarships.

"Each year we are impressed by our scholarship recipients level of professionalism, both at internships and in their academic accomplishments," said INSA Foundation President Suzanne Wilson Heckenberg. "This year is no exception. We are proud to support these talented students and future leaders of our community.” 

New this year! The Reinventing Geospatial Intelligence, Inc. (RGi) scholarship provides $10,000 to an undergraduate with a neurodiverse diagnosis who is pursuing a career in intelligence or national security.

Meet our 2023 Award Recipients!

Reinventing Geospatial Inc. (RGi) Scholarship

Maxwell Haseman
Undergraduate, Georgetown University

Submission Summary: Max Haseman is the first recipient of the Reinventing Geospatial Inc (RGi) Scholarship. A rising senior with a 3.9 GPA, he is pursing a degree in International Security at Georgetown University. Max notes while there have been challenges managing his ADHD, it has helped him develop the ability to quickly identify what aspects of a situation are critically important and which are less so. This skill is especially  important to a career in the IC, "...given the amount of noise in intelligence, as our access to vast amounts of data increases."

Max interned with the Strategic Studies Institute, U.S. Russia Foundation and at DoD, where he helped develop war games for senior policy makers. This experience helped him understand not only how intelligence is produced but also how it is consumed. A military child, Max credits the times he lived abroad as sparking his interest in foreign cultures and understanding how to best connect with others regardless of background. 

Investing in the Future of the IC Workforce - Undergraduate

Ava Marginean
Undergraduate, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Submission Summary: A rising sophomore at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Ava is pursuing a Political Science degree concentrating in International Relations, East Asian Languages and Cultures, and Russian Eurasian and Eastern European Studies. She plans to apply her language skills (Mandarin and Russian) and coding ability to a career as an IC intelligence analyst.

As a first generation American whose father emigrated as a refugee from a former Soviet-bloc nation, Ava understands "the importance of democracy" and hopes to serve in the IC "to make this nation a better, safer place for its citizens."


Taylor Potts
Diversity, Undergraduate
George Mason University

Submission Summary: Taylor is starting her final year of undergraduate studies at George Mason University. She has maintained a 3.5 GPA while pursuing a degree in International Affairs and holding an internship at Aviation Information Sharing and Analyses Center. In addition to strong technology skills, Taylor is fluent in Japanese and is currently learning Chinese. 

She plans to pursue a Master's in cybersecurity and apply her skills to an IC career where she can protect individuals online and in-person.

Investing in the Future of the IC Workforce - Master's

Brooke Gruber
Marymount University 

Submission Summary: A rising second-year graduate student in Marymount's Forensic Legal Psychology master’s program, Brooke has distinguished herself as being eager to learn, possessing strong leadership skills, and demonstrating "the kind of initiative future IC employees need." 

A Gold Star child, she has dedicated her life to honoring her father's service and to "protect and serve this country for which he gave his life." Brooke was originally a West Point cadet but was honorably discharged due to a training injury. She went on to earn a bachelor's degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she graduated with a 3.89 GPA. Brooke currently serves as President of the Marymount Intelligence Club.

Sameera Nuru
Diversity, Master’s
Marymount University

Submission Summary: In the final year of her Master’s at Marymount University, Sameera Nuru is pursuing a degree in Forensic and Legal Psychology with a concentration in Intelligence Analysis. As reflected by her 4.0 GPA, Sameera has an exceptional academic record and seeks to serve in the IC as an "intelligence analyst in divisions involving terrorism, border security, and insider threat assessments". 

Raised in Nigeria, Sameera's language proficiency includes Yoruba, Nigerian pidgin, French, and Arabic. She plans to eventually pursue a PhD in forensic assessments to help the intelligence community better understand insider threat behaviors, mitigation techniques, and management strategies.

Endowed Undergraduate Awards

Emily Roberts
Letitia A. Long Endowed Intelligence Scholarship
Undergraduate, Pennsylvania State University

Submission Summary: Emily Roberts is a rising senior at Pennsylvania State University where she is in a dual-degree program, pursuing a bachelor's in political science and philosophy, with a primary focus on national security and counterterrorism; and a master's in international affairs/security studies with a focus on cybersecurity and data analytics. Her sparkling academic record­­­­, including a 4.0 GPA, demonstrates her passion for intelligence and national security issues.

Emily has interned at the U.S. State Department, where her strong work ethic, can-do attitude, and creative problem-solving skills made her stand out from peers. She noted that she chose a STEM focused degree because it provides an opportunity to work in a broad array of career fields, from security and risk analysis, to cyber threat detection and mitigation, to translating security data into foreign policy, to analyzing the actions of international partners and adversaries. 


Arisa Chue
Governor Thomas J. Ridge Endowed Scholarship
Undergraduate, Stanford University

Submission Summary: A rising junior at Stanford University, Arisa has maintained a 4.0 GPA while pursuing a Computer Science degree. Her academic interests include, "exploring the intersection of the abstract concepts of linguistics and the concrete subject of Natural Language Processing (NLP)."

Arisa recently held an internship at Meta Platforms where she was praised for her rapid learning speed, strong work ethic, independence, and passion.

The INSF Board of Trustees is grateful to the volunteers who reviewed the dozens of applications this year. It is no easy task to select the recipients, especially given the high scholastic achievements of those who apply. Ms. Wilson-Heckenberg went on to say, "I’d also like to express our gratitude to the organizations and individuals who continue to help us expand our scholarship program as we work to attract and retain a diverse, world class workforce.”