AFSA Strategic Writing Award

Each year, AFSA is proud to honor the graduate from the National Defense University whose final paper has been chosen as the best essay on strategy or policy among students hailing from the Foreign Service at any agency. Foreign Service students graduating from any of NDU’s five colleges are eligible to receive this award and will be honored at their graduation ceremony. This includes students from the National War College, the College of Information and Cyberspace, the College of International Security Affairs, the Dwight D. Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy, and the Joint Forces Staff College.

The recipient of the AFSA Strategic Writing Award will be granted a prize of $1,000.

Formerly the George F. Kennan Strategic Writing Award in honor of George F. Kennan, the first Deputy Commandant of the National War College, where he wrote his famous 1947 article, “The Sources of Soviet Conduct.” In 2022 the award was renamed to the AFSA Strategic Writing Award following the decision to expanding eligibility to include Foreign Service students from any of NDU’s five colleges.

For more information on this award, please contact AFSA's Programs and Member Engagement department. They are available at

2022 AFSA Strategic Writing Award recipient Kevin Murakami receives his award alongside AFSA State VP Tom Yazdgerdi and National War College Commandant Brig Gen. Jeff Hurlbert.