RSU Students Visit Washington D.C. to Explore Careers in Intelligence Field

Editor’s note: As the following press release involves national security agencies and potential future employees of these agencies, the students’ identities are not being disclosed to preserve their anonymity and potential career prospects with said organizations.

Rogers State University faculty are no strangers to helping students reach their dreams. Quality education, dedication, time and personal investments all factor into RSU faculty members helping students achieve their career, and by extension, life goals.

RSU faculty like Dr. David Bath, assistant professor in the Department of History and Political Science.

Bath – along with five of his students – recently returned from a trip to Washington, D.C., a trip that yielded more than just souvenirs. All of the students returned with a firsthand experience of various potential career options in intelligence while some returned with employment opportunities.

“Last spring semester (2023), I was teaching a political science class called Hegemonic Conflicts – called such because ‘hegemony’ is the political, economic, and military predominance of a state and we were discussing the big players globally and how they interact with one another,” Bath said. “This was a course that took questions provided from the NSA, which the students researched, prepared papers on and ultimately presented their findings to representatives from the NSA.

“The students and their work made such an impression on the agents that they took our data back with them to Washington, D.C., to be included in the intelligence community’s database and the students later did a Zoom presentation with NSA analysts,” he said.

Impressed by the NSA’s response to their work, the students – one senior and four juniors – planned a visit to Washington, D.C., with Bath serving as their unofficial tour guide and intelligence agency liaison. Once the students raised the funds, the trip was taken to see the sights of Washington, D.C., as well as the nation’s top intelligence agencies in person.

“We were in D.C. from July 30 through Aug. 4, during which time we visited the NSA, the State Department, the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, the FBI and Congress,” he said. “In the evenings, we had dinners with representatives from the various agencies, some of whom were my former students, to allow the students to get to know more about the intelligence community as well as letting the representatives get to know the students.”

By week’s end, the connections brokered by Bath resulted in multiple opportunities for internships and employment with various arms of the national intelligence agencies.

While Bath said it gives him “immense satisfaction” in being able to show his students opportunities they might not have otherwise known about, the prospect of being able to connect students with members of the intelligence community is beneficial for all involved.

“When I think of being able to connect our students – the best of the best – with members of the intelligence community, I think about a discussion I had with an old friend of mine,” he mused. “He’s in one of the intelligence agencies and he came to one of the dinners we were at. He met the students, they met him, and afterwards, they all thanked him for coming out, for taking an interest in them as potential intelligence agency recruits.

“He said, ‘I didn’t just do it for you – I did it for the nation,’” Bath said. “These students – many of our students – are what the country needs in positions of national intelligence. I’m just trying to get them together. It helps the students but so much more than that, it benefits our country.”

RSU students interested in learning more about career opportunities in national security and/or intelligence can meet with NSA agents in person as National Security Agency representatives will be on campus Wednesday, Aug. 30, and Thursday, Aug. 31, speaking to groups of students majoring in technology, business, arts and science, cybersecurity, and more, as well as visiting members of the Junior ROTC from Claremore High School. There is a session open to all RSU students Aug. 30 at 3 p.m. in the upper level of the DCTC.

The National Security Agency is a national-level intelligence agency of the United States Department of Defense, under the authority of the Director of National Intelligence. The NSA currently has an Educational Partnership Agreement with RSU, through which the agency seeks to increase its employment pipeline of underrepresented populations in the science, technology and mathematics fields.

Air Force veteran Dr. David Bath has an extensive background in intelligence, having served as director of operations in an intelligence collection/counter intelligence unit; anti-terrorism/counter-terrorism division chief; at the Air Force Protection Battlelab; Air Force representative to the National Military Joint Intelligence Center; commander of an intelligence collection unit; Middle East/North Africa intelligence analyst for HQ USAF; deputy director of intelligence for the Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Agency; and more.

He is currently an associate professor and faculty advisor in the Department of History and Political Science at Rogers State University. He also is an advisor to the Student Veterans Association.

For more information about the upcoming NSA visit, email [email protected].