Learn more about why students have chosen the Bush School of Government & Public Service as Evan Lee, class of 2023 Master of International Affairs candidate, discusses his experience at the Bush School. Evan is in the National Security & Diplomacy Track.
My name is Evan Lee. I am doing a master’s in international affairs with focus on intelligence and the Middle East, on the National Security and Diplomacy track. Before coming here, I graduated from Indiana University, getting my bachelor’s. Then I worked as a defense contractor for Raytheon Technologies.
Why did you choose the Bush School?
I chose Bush School because I actually read Professor James Olson’s book, “Fair Play.” I was so impressed with his writing and everything that he had to say in it, that I looked up where he worked and saw he teaches here at the Bush School. I actually put in my application on the last day, which was the day after I finished the book.
Why would you tell prospective students to apply to the Bush School?
I think that the Bush School does a really good job of balancing the practitioners with the academics and those who have experience everywhere in between. That really comes out in the classroom — every professor has some sort of real-life experience to pull on and some sort of academic knowledge that they’re able to implement into the coursework.
What did you appreciate most about your first semester?
I really was impressed with how well everything blended together. It seemed like what I was learning in one class was just as applicable next day the next day when I went to a different class. It caught me by surprise how well I was able to implement everything I learned one day into the next day.
What are you looking most looking forward to this semester?
I would say that I’m really looking forward to getting to know my professors better. In your first semester, you’re hesitant about everything, but after going into your second semester you’re a little bit more comfortable with everything. I just feel like I’ve established better relationships with my professors and I’m a little more comfortable in knowing what it is I want to be doing. So I can start looking forward to who I’m going to want to do my capstone with or who I need to be talking to in order to kind of establish my uh establish my foundations for a future career field.
A lot of people are looking forward to internships and just getting things solidified over the summer, but I’m working full time while here so I don’t have anything new really to be looking forward to over the summer. But I am excited about the possibility of going to Israel on a class trip with Professor Howell.
What advice would you give a younger version of yourself applying to the Bush School?
I would say apply earlier. I waited a few years between my bachelor’s and master’s to apply to this program, and I really wish I would have taken the step earlier. It took me a few years to realize that a master’s in international affairs and this career field was actually what I wanted to get myself into. If you know this is what you want to do, then it’s worth pursuing now. You learn so much here — you learn so much about yourself, and it opens up so many doors into the future and future career prospects. If I were to do it all over again, I’d probably apply earlier a few years earlier.