Course exemptions are only granted to students who obtain advanced standing based on previous graduate level academic work or pass a proficiency test.
MIA students acquire the substantive knowledge, practical skills and real-world experience to address the big issues of international affairs. The curriculum integrates Columbia University’s unsurpassed academic choices with extensive experiential learning, including capstone workshop projects with organizations around the world. Students pursue a customizable core curriculum, including a wide range of courses on international politics and political economy. Students also choose from a broad range of majors: International Security Policy, International Finance and Economic Policy, Economic and Political Development, Human Rights and Humanitarian Policy, Energy and Environment, and Urban and Social Policy. Graduates join a dynamic network of MIA alumni in leading organizations in the public, private and nonprofit sectors around the world.
The MIA degree program is best suited for young professionals holding a bachelor’s degree and 3-5 years of relevant work or substantive internship experience who have a passion for international affairs and a commitment to make the world a better place.
MIA graduates work around the world in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Recent employers include the United Nations, U.S. Departments of State and Defense, foreign ministries abroad, Deutsche Bank, McKinsey & Company, the International Rescue Committee, and many others.
The MIA offers a customizable core curriculum, including a wide range of courses in international politics and political economy. Students choose from a broad range of concentrations (majors): International Security Policy, International Finance and Economic Policy, Economic and Political Development, Human Rights and Humanitarian Policy, Energy and Environment, and Urban and Social Policy. Students prepare to work in a global environment by demonstrating proficiency in a modern language other than English. The MIA also offers special international immersion courses and fieldwork opportunities.
All students are required to register full-time as many required courses are only offered during the day.
Dual-Degree Programs with other columbia schools
- MIA and Master of Science in Journalism (MS)
- MIA and Master of Science in Urban Planning (MS)
- MIA and Master of Business Administration (MBA)
- MIA and Juris Doctor (JD)
- MIA and Master of Public Health (MPH)
- MIA and Master in Quantitative Methods in the Social Sciences (MA)
- MIA and Master of Science in Social Work (MSSW)
Dual-Degree Programs with international partners
- Berlin: the Hertie School - Master of Public Policy or Master of International Affairs
- London: London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) - Master of Public Administration
- Paris: School of International Affairs at Sciences Po - Master of International Affairs and School of Public Affairs at Sciences Po - Master of Public Administration
- São Paulo: Fundação Getulio Vargas Escola de Administração de Empresas de São Paulo (FGV-EAESP)
- Singapore: the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (LKYSPP) at the National University of Singapore - Master of Public Policy
- Tokyo: University of Tokyo Graduate School of Public Policy (GraSPP) - Master of Public Policy
More information about the application deadlines and checklist can be found on How to Apply to SIPA. Detailed instructions on the application requirements may be found once you start an account in the online Application Portal or by browsing the Admissions Blog.
Employment By Sector
Employment by Sector: Public Sector, 38.6%; Private Sector, 50%; Nonprofit Sector, 10.5%; Pursuing Further Study: 0.9%
Employment information as reported by the graduates six months after graduation. In 2021, 163 students graduated from the MIA program, 125 reported.