CEO of Alaskan Oil & Gas Association pursues master's degree at ASU


Headshot of Kara Moriarty, CEO of Alaskan Oil & Gas Association.

Kara Moriarty, CEO of Alaska Oil & Gas Association, obtained her Master of Arts in international affairs and leadership through ASU's School of Politics and Global Studies, an ASU Online degree that works with affiliates from ASU’s Leadership, Diplomacy and National Security Lab. Photo courtesy Kara Moriarty

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Although she received her undergraduate degree in elementary education in 1996, Kara Moriarty’s interest in government and public policy ultimately led her back to legislative staff work. 

Moriarty has been with Alaska Oil & Gas Association since April 2005 and has been the leader of the trade association for nearly 11 years, where she works to advocate for the long-term viability of the oil and gas industry. 

Additionally, working as a lobbyist for the state of Alaska inspired Moriarty to study for her online Master of Arts in international affairs and leadership (MA IAL) through Arizona State University’s School of Politics and Global Studies, a degree that works with affiliates from ASU's Leadership, Diplomacy and National Security Lab. 

Through the MA program, offered through ASU Online, Moriarty was able to strengthen her knowledge of diplomacy by attending a week’s worth of immersive activities and training in Washington, D.C. Going forward, Moriarty’s degree will serve through her involvement in public and government affairs affecting the oil and gas industry in Alaska. 

Washington Week is a program available to students in the master’s program who seek to gain insight into the inner workings of international affairs.

While I was attracted to the program because it can be accomplished online, there is nothing that replaces the value of interacting and building connections in person,” Moriarty said. 

While in Washington, D.C., Moriarty enjoyed the quality of lectures, tours and instruction provided by instructors and leaders in U.S. government agencies and Congress as she recalls her week being a “fascinating, invigorating, educational and humbling experience.” 

Throughout the week, Moriarty felt reaffirmed in her decision to increase her global literacy by pursuing her master’s degree. 

“I would wholeheartedly advise others to participate in Washington Week, especially for students who are interested in foreign service, United Nations, Congressional or other type work that may have some D.C. component,” Moriarty said. 

Moriarty is eager to take her lessons from Washington Week and her experience studying for her master’s back to her professional and personal life in Alaska. 

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