Columbia College | Columbia Engineering

Avery Alpha

Foreign Fighter Flows and How We Stop Them

"Alumni Journeys"

Tuesday, February 7, 2017
6:00–8:00 p.m.
Rennert Auditorium, The Kraft Center

Foreign fighters are not a new phenomenon. But the rise and spread of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in Iraq and Syria has changed the nature of the threat they present across the globe. In response, the United States and our foreign partners have reevaluated our approach, bolstered our defenses, and expanded our efforts to disrupt foreign fighters at every point in the radicalization, recruitment, and deployment process. 


Avery Alpha serves as the Senior Policy Advisor and Chief of Staff for the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism at the White House. For the Obama Administration, she helps coordinate, implement, and advance the President's policy priorities on counterterrorism, homeland security, and cyber security.  She joined the National Security Council in 2014 as Director for Counterterrorism, responsible for Syria, Turkey, Egypt, and Europe counterterrorism issues as well as foreign fighters. She spent 2010 through 2013 at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo working with Egyptian partners to disrupt terrorist attacks, dismantle terrorist networks, and--after the revolution--rebuild counterterrorism cooperation. She joined the Department of State in 2006, and prior to that worked in the Studies Department at the Council on Foreign Relations. She is proficient in Arabic and is a graduate of Columbia College at Columbia University.



Columbia Undergraduate Scholars Program


403 Alfred Lerner Hall
2920 Broadway
New York, NY 10027

Call: (212) 854-6378

Fax: (212) 854-2562

Office Hours
9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.