The Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats discussed international security challenges and the need for a young workforce to join the intelligence community Thursday at the University of Texas at Austin.
The “U.S. Intelligence: Confronting 21st Century Challenges” symposium was hosted by The UT Intelligence Studies Project, Clements Center for National Security, Robert Strauss International Security and Law, and the LBJ School of Public Affairs,
"Now more than ever because of all these threats we need a vibrant and dynamic creative intelligence community," Coats said.
Coats informed the crowd about current threats facing the nation such as ongoing issues with North Korea, Russia and China. Coats and Senator John Cornyn said cyber security is one the nation has lagged behind on.
"You'll be seeing Congress lean in to that issue pretty heavily now with the Facebook revelations and Cambridge Analytica and ways to protect American privacy and make sure people know what they are getting into when they go on these platforms," Sen. Cornyn said.
March marks one year for Coats as Director of National Intelligence he is the 5th incumbent. UT Intelligence Studies project director Stephen Slick held a 20-minute Q&A with Coats asking questions about DNI and what Coats makes of his position.
"What I could do is try to establish trusted relationships between me and the directors of the various agencies so they can see my efforts as telling them what to do through directional hiring and firing etc. but through coordination and collaboration," said Coats.
Coats said he's looking towards the future and is encouraging students at UT and across the nation to pursue a career in national intelligence.