Katie Hyten, 2014, United States

On the community at Fletcher: Throughout the application and decision process, I regularly communicated with faculty, alumni, and current students of the Fletcher School. During those conversations, I would always ask these “Fletcher experts” how they felt about the community at the school.  Having spent the past few years working in an academic institution where I was mentored, supported, and encouraged by professors throughout the university, I knew how rare it was to have professors truly care about my career and my future. They invited me to dinner at their homes; I met their families; I walked into their offices when I would have yet another question about the graduate school application process; and I remain in touch with many of them to this day. I was skeptical, at best, that any other institution could rival that one. And yet, with each conversation with the “Fletcher experts,” I was told the same thing: “I can’t explain the community to you. It is unbelievably special, but you won’t understand until you experience it.” They were right! Students here are encouraged to be collaborative rather than competitive, and with so many diverse interests, home countries, and career goals, many of us won’t compete directly with each other in the job market anyway. I have found people to practice my Arabic with, to tutor me in Economics, and to explain the intricacies of the Kuwaiti parliamentary system. I am getting paid to do research in a subject I would choose to learn about anyway, and there are days when I find that all Fletcher students, faculty, and alumni were correct - you really can’t begin to describe the community until you’re swept up in it.

How do you plan to use your experience at Fletcher to make a difference in the world? 

This generation has a unique, unprecedented opportunity. In our lifetimes, we will interact with people from around the world more often than those who came before us. We will encounter cultures, religions, debates, and differences on a daily basis. This gives us an incredible forum to make an impact on this world. I want to use this reality and my experiences at Fletcher to engage in a discussion with policy makers that relates this new reality to religion. Generally speaking, I want to help create a framework by which policy makers in the United States can better incorporate topics of religion into its diplomacy and conflict resolution efforts in the Middle East.  I look forward to applying my Fletcher education to bridge the gap in acknowledging the role of religion in Middle East conflict and applying it on a policy level.

Favorite book:

Les Miserables

Favorite author:

Charles Dickens

Favorite movie:

The Princess Bride

Favorite place you’ve visited:

The Hagia Sophia, Istanbul

Favorite place to study on campus:

3rd floor of Ginn Library

Fields of Study

  • International Negotiation and Conflict Resolution
  • Southwest Asia and Islamic Civilization

Activities involved in at Fletcher

  • Research Assistant for Professor Nadim Rouhana
  • Running Club
  • Med Club
  • WILD

Education before Fletcher

  • BA, International Studies (Political Studies), Pepperdine University

Experience before Fletcher

  • Program Coordinator, Glazer Institute, Pepperdine University, Malibu, CA


  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • English

Summer Internship

Search for Common Ground, Beirut, Lebanon
I assisted the Beirut office of Search for Common Ground in research, grant writing, reporting, and project implementation. In addition to this job, though, I also conducted interviews for my thesis and studied Arabic, traveling throughout Lebanon to better understand the political dynamics, the influx of refugees, and the various communities of the country.