APSIA Launches Career Trends Series

leigh   April 14, 2014   News

In spring 2014, APSIA launched an ongoing series of conference calls and webinars to educate the career services staff at its member schools. Presenters have included management staff from Deloitte Consulting, Oxford HR (UK), and Bread for the World, in addition to members of the White House Presidential Personnel Office.

Discussions focus on hiring trends in the field and how members can best prepare APSIA graduates for the marketplace.

Nancy Rhodes of Bread for the World stressed the value of highlighting “cross-cultural skills, analytical abilities, and real accomplishments” on a resume, rather than a list of tasks.  Similarly, White House staff noted that individuals with excellent communication skills, tact, and a broad range of perspectives excelled in executive branch positions.

Joni Swedlund and Jonathan Rice described the “entrepreneurial, collaborative, and team-oriented” attitude needed for success at Deloitte;  while Hazel Douglas explained how Oxford HR has shifted from searching for candidates with a background in humanitarian aid to needing individuals with trade, finance, education, and other skills who can “support the development of economic infrastructure in developing countries.”

In addition to their advice on hiring trends, the presenters walked APSIA directors through the formal and informal hiring processes at their organizations.

Due to positive feedback, APSIA will continue this series into summer 2014.  Through these and other programs, APSIA strives to promote excellence in professional, international affairs education worldwide by sharing information and ideas among our member schools.

Penn State School of International Affairs launches specialized study tracks

leigh   April 3, 2014   News



New study tracks announced by Penn State University’s School of International Affairs (SIA) provide graduate students the opportunity to develop general international affairs skills in navigating global challenges and expertise in a specific field. The six new study tracks—International Security Studies; Development Policy; International Education; Dispute Resolution; Environment and Resources; and Humanitarian Response and Human Rights tap into the strengths of SIA’s faculty expertise. In addition, the tracks reflect critical areas of global international affairs practice. 

“We are very excited to offer these compelling enhancements to students who have expressed both a vocational and academic interest in these study areas ,” said SIA Director Tiyanjana Maluwa who is also the Associate Dean for International Affairs at Penn State’s Dickinson School of Law. “Participants can continue to create their own curriculum choosing from dozens of electives, or take advantage of the outstanding opportunities afforded by our new study tracks.” Director Maluwa emphasized that the Master of International Affairs program is designed to equip its graduates with the doctrine and skills required of effective leaders in the global marketplace.

The new tracks capitalize on the strong relationship between SIA and Penn State Law School which are co-located and share a number of Law and International Affairs faculty members. Faculty leading the tracks include: Richard Butler, Johannes W. Fedderke, Scott Sigmund Gartner, Amy Gaudion, Dennis C. Jett, John A. Kelmelis, Flynt Leverett, Tiyanjana Maluwa, Sophia McClennen ,  and Catherine A. Rogers.

“The focus of our program has not changed,” said Professor Maluwa. “We are fortunate that our students come from all over the world—more than half of our students are from outside of the U.S. Our goal continues to be to augment the abilities and skills students bring into the program with the capacity to think, communicate, and practice as an international affairs expert.”

Professor Maluwa said, “our emphasis is on graduating students with the skills and confidence to begin an international affairs career anywhere in the world.”

About SIA

A Master of International Affairs degree from Penn State’s School of International Affairs is designed to train leaders who create, research, and enact global solutions. Through our curriculum, faculty mentorship, career services, and integration with Penn State University, a top global research institution, students can map a program of study that marries their personal interests  and professional goals. SIA is an affiliate member of APSIA (the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs).

Intern at APSIA HQ

leigh   February 25, 2014   News

Bush School Names Scowcroft Institute, MPIA Program Leaders

leigh   February 20, 2014   News

AndrewNatsiosAndrew Natsios has been named director of the Scowcroft Institute of International Affairs at the Bush School of Government and Public Service, Texas A&M University, where he is also an executive professor and Scowcroft Institute Fellow.  Natsios was most recently a Distinguished Professor in the practice of diplomacy at Georgetown University and former administrator of the US Agency for International Development (USAID).  As USAID administrator from 2001-2006, Natsios managed reconstruction programs in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Sudan.  He also served as US special envoy to Sudan in 2006-2007.



Bush School Dean Ryan Crocker has also named retired Ambassador Larry C. Napper as interim director of the School’s Master’s Program in International Affairs (MPIA).  Napper will hold the position while the School conducts a national search for the department’s next leader.  Former MPIA director Dr. Charles Hermann will spend the next academic year

as Scholar in Residence at the Mershon Center for Security Studies at Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio.  Hermann was director of the Mershon Center before coming to Texas A&M.

Currently a senior lecturer at the School, Ambassador Napper spent 31 years in the U.S. Foreign Service, retiring in 2005.  Among his many diplomatic assignments was serving as U.S. Ambassador to Kazakhstan from 2001-2004.  His distinguished service was recognized with the Secretary of State’s Career Achievement Award, and two Presidential Meritorious Service Awards, among others.

Former MPIA director Dr. Charles Hermann will spend the next academic year as Scholar in Residence at the Mershon Center for Security Studies at Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio.  Hermann was director of the Mershon Center before coming to Texas A&M.

Maxwell School selected to host young African leaders

leigh   February 6, 2014   News

he Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University will join IREX and the U.S. Department of State to host 25 participants from President Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) for a six-week public administration training institute. The first session is planned for this summer on the Syracuse University campus.

The Maxwell School’s public administration institute will bring together young professionals from across Africa who are currently employed by government and non-governmental organizations or who are seeking to build careers in public service. The program will be led by public administration and other social science faculty at the Maxwell School as well as teachers from across Syracuse University. In addition to classroom sessions, the participants will meet with local, county, and state government officials to gain a first-hand experience of American public administration and policy making in practice.

“We’re honored to be one of the inaugural university partners for the Young African Leaders Initiative. Maxwell’s 90-year tradition of preparing leaders to make a difference in their community makes the School a natural home for this urgently needed, path breaking program,” said Maxwell Dean James B. Steinberg.

The YALI was established in 2010 by President Obama to help provide young African leaders the skills and knowledge necessary to spur growth and prosperity, strengthen democratic governance, and enhance peace and security across the continent. YALI will bring 500 Africans to the United States each year to attend programs being organized by selected universities across the country. All sessions will emphasize leadership but will focus on three themes: public administration, civil society, and business management. The program will culminate with participation in a Presidential Summit on Africa at the end of July.

APSIA announces a new executive director

leigh   December 17, 2013   News

The Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs (APSIA) is very pleased to announce the appointment of Carmen Iezzi  Mezzera as its new Executive Director, effective January 1, 2014. Mezzera was selected from a strong pool of candidates.  She brings extensive experience as a director of international non-profit organizations, a deep understanding of professional education in international affairs and a passion for our graduates.


APSIA President Susan M. Collins said, “APSIA’s Executive Committee looks forward to working with Carmen, who will be a strong advocate for international affairs education.  Her leadership will help us to strengthen our global network of member and affiliate schools and enhance APSIA’s partnerships, especially with alumni, employers and policy leaders.”

Mezzera replaces Leigh Morris Sloane, who left APSIA in August to become Chief of Staff to the President of the Brookings Institution.

Upon accepting the position, Mezzera stated, “As an alumna of an APSIA member institution, I am honored to have the chance to further members’ efforts to prepare students for the global marketplace. In an increasingly interconnected world, an understanding of international affairs remains critically important. I look forward to working with members, affiliates, and the wider community to advance APSIA’s mission.”

Before joining APSIA,  Mezzera served as the Director of Programs and Operations at the Bretton Woods Committee.   Previously, she served as Executive Director of the Fair Trade Federation, Assistant Director for Education and Outreach at the Atlantic Council of the United States, and Director of Alumni Relations for the School of International Service (SIS) at American University.

Mezzera received both her undergraduate degree (Phi Beta Kappa ) and master’s degree from SIS.  Her graduate studies focused on international organizations and sustainable development, and in the course of her studies, she provided analyses for NATO’s Partnership for Peace in Mons, Belgium and the United Nations Development Program Washington Office.

Actively engaged as a volunteer, Mezzera has served as Vice Chair of the Board for St. Matthew’s Cathedral in Washington DC, Co-chair of the Canadian Coalition for Fair Trade, and Director-at-Large of the Abyssinian Fund in Harlem, NY. She has written and/or provided interviews for CNN, CBS, Forbes, the Wall Street Journal, Martha Stewart Living, Vogue, and Cooperative Grocer Magazine - among other outlets – and spoken at numerous national and international conferences. She received the 2008 Rising Star Alumni Award from American University.

For further information please contact Margaret B. Brown, program associate at mbrown@apsia.org