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Maxwell School
Maxwell / Department of Public Administration & International Affairs

Public Diplomacy

MAIR/MS in Public Relations Dual Degree Option


Public Diplomacy is a new field that has evolved far beyond the traditional view that includes government-funded and sponsored cultural, educational, exchange and broadcasts to promote the national interest of a nation state.

Why Public Diplomacy?

Increasingly, employers in government, international organizations, non-profit organizations and the NGO community, as well as the private sector, are looking for people who understand diverse audiences at home and abroad and are skillful at crafting messages that describe the organization, convey its vision, and help the organization to communicate its message in times of change or crisis.  Every organization, regardless of its size or mission, needs people who have the training and skills to create and sustain an effective dialogue with external audiences.

The two-degree program in Public Diplomacy/Communication provides students with these skills and the academic credentials from two highly visible schools at Syracuse University. 


Students in the Public Diplomacy joint degree will have an automatically defined Career Track in Public Diplomacy. The required Spring internship for the PD program, fulfills the internship requirement for the MAIR providing the work completed is related to international affairs. During this semester - usually in Washington, DC - students will also also complete the final two PD Career Track Courses; Issues in Public Diplomacy and Issues in Public Communications.  PD students also have the summer available for participation in an abroad experience at one of our 20+ global programs worldwide.  
Any credits earned in an abroad program will be counted as Career Track or IR Elective credits.  An overview of the PD program course requirements is found below: 

International Relations Courses            
                                                 Public Relations Courses                                         
CORE (9 credits)                                            CORE (30 credits) 
International Actors and Issues         Introduction of Public Diplomacy & Communications 
Principles of Economics   Visual Communications Theory & Practice
Quantitative Skills in IR   Public Relations Theory 
    Public Relations Writing 
IR SIGNATURE COURSE   Advanced Public Diplomacy 
(select one, 3 credits)    Media Law 
History of International Relations                        Public Relations Research 
Comparative Foreign Policy   PR Campaign Planning & Execution 
Economic Dimensions of Global Power   Public Relations Management 
Culture in World Affairs    PR Practicum (Internship - Spring 2nd year) 
Development & Sustainability     
(12 credits)          
Issues in Public Diplomacy     
Research Consultancy in Public Diplomacy
Students select two PAI courses    
IR CAPSTONE COURSE (1 credit)     
IR OPEN ELECTIVE (3 credits)     
TOTAL:  28 IR credits/ of a total of 58           TOTAL:  30 PD credits / of a total of 58 

Application and requirements   

Students wishing to undertake the dual course of study submit one application to the dual degree program.  When asked "To which program and degree do you intend to apply?" on the online application form, please select "Public Diplomacy (Public Relations, M.S. and International Relations, M.A. *joint program)" which can be found as an option under The Maxwell School or The Newhouse School.  Students fulfill the core courses, specializations, and exit requirements for the dual public diplomacy program, whose curriculum is unique from each of the two individual degrees. Upon completion of these requirements, students are awarded two degrees, the MS from Public Relations, and the MAIR from International Relations. A more detailed overview of the joint degree requirements can be found in the graduate student handbook