Jake Kuipers, 2016, USA

Cross-Border Transactions Attorney, McDermott Will & Emery LLP - Boston, MA

Why Fletcher: When researching graduate programs, I quickly realized that Fletcher was the only program that would really prepare me for my career aspirations. I am interested in helping states use the rule of law to generate effective and meaningful economic development. Because my interest transcends law, development, and international finance, I am pairing Fletcher's unique multi-disciplinary and professional curriculum with a law degree. Fletcher's renowned legal classes dramatically enhance my formal legal training while classes that are more policy, analytic, and economic driven give me the economic and policy skill set needed to translate my legal knowledge through the lens of international development. Fletcher will empower my law degree by giving me specific expertise and the authority to transition from a passive observer to a dynamic actor in my pursued field. I just wish I could also get my law degree at Fletcher!

On collaboration and teamwork at Fletcher:  I cannot think of a better environment or more enthusiastic community than the one at The Fletcher School. Every time I talk with other students, faculty, staff, or alumni, I am consistently amazed by everyone's tenacity and interest in helping one another. Just this past week, I was lamenting  a complex issue I was researching, and one friend instantly offered to spend time every week discussing the subject, one friend offered to send his notes, and another friend offered to put me in touch with an expert in the field. This energy and familial environment ultimately translates into intense pride for the school and continues well past graduation. I can already see how being part of the “Fletcher Mafia” will be an invaluable asset when finding a job, settling into a new city, and developing connections for the rest of my life.

Favorite author:

Keetje Kuipers (my sister)

Favorite food:


Favorite website:


Most rewarding trip:

Gutting houses in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina

Favorite Guest Speaker:

President of Estonia

Fields of Study:

  • International Political Economy
  • Law and Development

Activities involved in at Fletcher:

  • Harvard Law and International Development Society
  • Fletcher Diplomacy Club
  • Fletcher Net Impact
  • Fletcher Political Risk Club
  • International Development Group
  • Fletcher Families

Education before Fletcher:

  • BA, Political Science (major); Economics and Japanese (minors), Middlebury College  

Experience before Fletcher:

  • The Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, Political Risk Contractor, Cleveland, OH
  • Harvard Business School, Research Associate, Cambridge, MA / Budapest, Hungary
  • U.S. Congressional Budget Office, Assistant Analyst, Washington, DC


  • French
  • English