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FP Guide

2022 Applying to Graduate School in International Affairs

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Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies

Renowned Faculty and New Curriculum Build Global Mindset and Expertise

As one of the country’s preeminent international relations graduate schools, the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) prides itself on innovative thinking, an analytical approach, and policy expertise. Because the school sets such high standards for the quality of education it offers students, its admissions committee is looking for applicants who can match the school’s ambition to remain at the forefront of global policy shaping and policy making.

Dr. Chiedo Nwankwor, the school’s new vice dean for education and academic affairs, is quick to point out, however, that the school takes a holistic approach when reviewing potential applicants. “We need variety in the room if we’re going to achieve significant solutions for increasingly complex issues, so we’re not just looking at academic metrics,” she says.

While backgrounds, experiences, and career paths vary widely, the student body shares a core trait: an eagerness to learn. Applicants must demonstrate a passion for international relations and a propensity for thriving in collaborative environments. “We want to see a good dose of intellectual curiosity, appreciation for the growing complexity in the world, and willingness to advance,” adds Nwankwor.

“We are intentional about making sure that the students we send out into the world are well-rounded. So we seek students who are ambitious to become experts themselves, having learned from our renowned faculty, and who are then intentional about using the skills, knowledge, and resources they gain here to do good.” –Dr. Chiedo Nwankwor, Vice Dean for Education and Academic Affairs, School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University

She also points out that the school has made considerable efforts to increase financial aid offerings, using both merit and need-based criteria.

Johns Hopkins SAIS’s flagship degree, the MA in International Relations (MAIR), has recently undergone restructuring, with a curriculum now emphasizing policy relevance, international relations and economics, and regional and language studies to address the evolving realities of the global political landscape. The school has also added a new, cutting-edge degree—the MA in Strategy, Cybersecurity, and Intelligence—to its catalog of degree programs geared toward mid-career professionals.

CAMPUS HIGHLIGHT | SAIS’s New Home Provides Unique Student Experiences and Learning Opportunities


In fall 2023, Johns Hopkins SAIS will welcome students to its new home at 555 Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, DC. This state-of-the-art facility expands the school’s capacity for teaching excellence and evidence-based research toward addressing global challenges. The building is minutes from the US Capitol, the White House, and Union Station.

Designed to foster community and collaboration, 555 Pennsylvania Avenue boasts 38 high-tech classrooms, a 375-seat theater and performing arts space, group and individual study spaces, lounges, and roof terraces with views of Pennsylvania Avenue and the Capitol. Student amenities include a library, coffee shop, restaurant, and fitness center. Event spaces will host prominent policymakers and global leaders. Other divisions of Johns Hopkins University will also have a presence in the building, providing unmatched opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration.

Graduate Degree Program Options
• MA in International Relations (Washington, DC; Bologna, Italy)
• Master of International Public Policy (Washington, DC; Bologna, Italy)
• MA in International Economics and Finance (Washington, DC)
• MA in Strategy, Cybersecurity, and Intelligence (Washington, DC)
• MA in Global Policy (Washington, DC)
• MA in European Public Policy (Bologna, Italy)
• MA in Global Risk (online; Bologna, Italy)
• MA in International Affairs (Bologna, Italy)
• MA in International Studies (Nanjing, China)
• MA in Sustainable Energy (online)

Deadlines for Fall 2023
Early Notification: November 1, 2022
Regular Application and Financial Aid/Scholarships:
• January 7, 2023, for all programs except the two below
• February 1, 2023, for Master of International Public Policy and MA in Global Policy

Standardized Exam Scores: GRE and GMAT optional. For non-native English speakers: TOEFL, IELTS, or Cambridge English.

Recommendation Letters: Two are required. Recommendations should be written by academic and professional colleagues, such as professors and work supervisors.

Application Checklist: Visit https://sais.jhu.edu/admissions-aid/master-degrees-admissions, scroll down to see campus degrees and programs, and click on the master’s degree of interest.