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Scholarship and Skills for Global Careers

Master of Arts in International Relations

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Career Tracks help you tailor a program to match your employment goals


Research Centers engage diverse faculty and scholars in pressing society issues


Certificates of Advanced Study can be earned concurrently with your M.A. in IR

MA in International Relations Core Requirements

The M.A. in international relations requires 40 credits, plus a global internship.

  • Core coursework (15 credits) plus an international relations capstone seminar (1 credit) provide foundational knowledge of international affairs, quantitative and qualitative skills, as well as analytic, presentational and writing abilities.
  • Career track coursework (12 credits) help students develop subject matter expertise relevant to their career goals.
  • Elective coursework (12 credits) drawn from across the Maxwell School’s social science graduate departments and the broader graduate course offerings at Syracuse University.

MA in International Relations Career Tracks

In addition to core coursework, international relations master’s students are required to select a career track to provide a focus to their studies. 

  • Conflict Resolution
  • Data Analysis for International Affairs
  • International Development
  • International Political Economy
  • International Service
  • Regional Concentration (Africa, East Asia, South Asia, Europe and Eurasia, Latin America, Middle East and North Africa)
  • Security Studies


Career Ready

Maxwell has a proven track record of excellence preparing students for meaningful careers in the international arena. Through career track course selections, a capstone seminar and a required global internship (often two!), students emerge career ready and primed to take on tomorrow’s tough challenges.

Explore the faculty who teach in the M.A. in international relations program.

International Relations Capstone Seminar

Confront a real-world policy challenge, such as nuclear non-proliferation, climate change and more in this simulation exercise. This 1-credit Maymester course culminates your first year of on-campus studies at Maxwell and serves as a bridge between your academic and professionally focused requirements.

Global Internship

Following the capstone, complete a required global internship abroad or in Washington, D.C. With networks and courses at dozens of locations around the world, Maxwell’s international programs help you build experiences and connections to drive a lifetime of career success.

Students pictured outside of Unicef offices


of our most recent graduates secure employment within six months of graduation.
Rendering of CSIS building
M.A. in international relations students conduct a global internship either abroad or in Washington, D.C., where they also can take classes at Maxwell’s facilities within the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
Hertie school of Governance
Earn two degrees in two years from two top global universities—the Maxwell School in the U.S. and the Hertie School in Berlin, Germany.
Simple map in greyscale
With an array of regional centers spanning the globe, Maxwell students can immerse in research and study of world cultures, issues, politics and international affairs, and find ample opportunities to build and practice foreign language skills.
Kristen Patel

To Syracuse, DC, Hong Kong and back

Distinguished alumna Kristen (Kris) Patel is the Donald P. and Margaret Curry Gregg Professor of Practice in Korean and East Asian Affairs, teaching undergraduate and graduate classes in D.C. and Syracuse. With more than 25 years of experience leading intelligence and analytics programs in the public and private sectors, Patel returns to Maxwell directly from HSBC’s Compliance Office in Asia-Pacific, where she built and managed regional financial crime intelligence capability for one of the world’s largest banks.

Kristen Patel ’90 Econ/PST

Donald P. and Margaret Curry Gregg Professor of Practice in Korean and East Asian Affairs

Read the full announcement 

Public Administration and International Affairs Department
215 Eggers Hall