Letter from the Director
The Walsh School of Foreign Service (SFS) at Georgetown University offers some of the world’s most respected graduate and undergraduate degrees in international affairs. In 2018, the Foreign Policy magazine ranked our master’s programs first and undergraduate programs fourth worldwide. Located in Washington, D.C., SFS provides students with rare opportunities to interact with diplomats, economists, and politicians who lead the State Department, White House, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, and other major institutions in global affairs.
Housed in SFS, the Asian Studies Program is a leader in educating the next generation of Asia experts. Home to more than half of the global population as well as many of the world’s largest and fastest-growing economies, Asia is at the center of global dynamism. Yet, from Kabul to Xinjiang to Pyongyang, Asia is also where we find the world’s most dangerous regimes and sources of political instability. Whether your interest is in politics, security, business, history, or culture, studying Asia in Washington will allow you to explore this critical region from all dimensions.
Over the past three decades, the Asian Studies Program has grown in size and scope, now servicing both graduate and undergraduate students while advancing an international profile and presence. In particular, our M.A. in Asian Studies (MASIA) degree has seen multiple cohorts move from the classroom to successful careers in government, business, and academia—here in Washington and across the rest of the United States and Asia.
Launched in 2011, MASIA is unlike any other regional studies program in that we provide students with a unique combination of deep regional knowledge and advanced analytical skills they will need for their next professional step. Our curriculum requires students to become regional experts with a specific functional concentration, such as Security and Politics, Political Economy, History and Culture, and Environment, Energy, and Transnational Issues. Moreover, our 36-credit program allows students to choose either a 3-semester or 4-semester track, giving them enough flexibility to pursue internships or part-time employment while they have premium access to Washington’s resources. In our view, a regional studies program should do more than train students in culture or politics, though that remains the focus of our degree. Our program takes a step further, challenging students to transform their knowledge into concrete tools they will use in their careers—whether that may be through teaching them how to write effective policy memos or conducting business negotiation simulations.
When it comes to faculty, we boast world-class scholars many of whom are also renowned practitioners with years of experience. We have leading anthropologists, historians, economists, and political scientists who have done cutting-edge work in their own disciplines and bring scholarly expertise into the classroom. At the same time, we have senior policy-makers who helped draft climate and energy agreements with China, negotiated with North Korea to end their nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs, and assisted the president of the United States in responding to crises in Southeast Asia. It is truly rare to find a place where you can learn history or international relations theories from people who have actually applied them in national and international decision-making.
Finally, we are proud to call the members of this program our family. MASIA, for example, is a close-knit group of 25 to 30 students who come from a diverse set of backgrounds. The members of each cohort make meaningful connections with their classmates who will become colleagues for life, no matter what sector or industry they enter after graduation. Our faculty and staff are 100 percent committed to the success of our students through genuine and consistent engagement. With Washington as our broader campus, the Asian Studies faculty and staff work closely with students to navigate the wealth of opportunities and networks the city has to offer. Most importantly, we take great interest not only in each student’s professional and intellectual growth but also in his or her holistic well-being. Thank you for visiting our site, and we look forward to hearing from you.
Michael J. Green