An Insider Look at “Security vs. Liberty,” #WCsymposium blog by Claire Gibby ’16

Above, Claire Gibby ’16 (right) with Dr. Tobias Gibson (left), Associate Professor of Political Science.

Claire Gibby ’16 is a Political Science major with minors in Security Studies and Accounting. She a member of Kappa Alpha Theta sorority, the Honor Commission, the Order of the Sword and Shield, the cross country team, and is Chief Executive Officer for the Blue Blazers Investment Committee. This year Claire also served on the Hancock Symposium preparation committee. Below is her blog about serving as a member of the committee.

The 2015 Hancock Symposium preparation committee has worked meticulously to create an event that highlights the national security aspects of several disciplines on campus in order to engage students across academic departments. I have had to the opportunity to serve on the committee as a student representative from the Security Studies department.

As an aspiring law student who hopes to study national security law, the upcoming Hancock Symposium is of particular interest to me. I’m especially looking forward to hearing from Laura Donohue, Professor of Law at Georgetown University, and John Rizzo, a former lawyer for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), both of whom are distinguished professionals in their field.

The terrorist attacks on September 11, and the resulting efforts to prevent future attacks, suddenly made national security law an incredibly relevant and necessary expertise to ensure the safety of the United States. Donohue is at the forefront of her field, with an impressive resume and has written extensively for various journals and media outlets. She also serves as Director of Georgetown Law’s Center on National Security and the Law, one of the best national security law programs in the nation. Donohue brings a unique academic perspective to the discussion on how to balance U.S. domestic security while also protecting individual civil liberties.

Rizzo spent the majority of his career in the general counsel’s office at CIA. Upon graduating from George Washington Law, Rizzo began working for the federal government. As I also hope to pursue a career in public service, I am very interested in hearing about his experiences of working closely with various administrations throughout his time with the CIA.

Westminster’s 2015 Hancock Symposium is sure to be an event for the history books. Guest speakers come from a variety of fields and organizations, from the local Fulton community to President Obama’s Cabinet, while all play a role in keeping our nation safe. I look forward to meeting these individuals during the two-day symposium event on Westminster’s campus.

Visit for a complete list of speakers and schedule of events. The Hancock Symposium is open to the public. Select speakers will be live-streamed.

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