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International Affairs Major Concentration

The International Affairs Program allows students to explore, interpret, and understand significant global events via an interdisciplinary lens designed to promote critical thinking and innovative solutions to contemporary human problems.

The challenges confronting our increasingly interconnected world defy simple solutions.  By merging the perspectives of different disciplines in innovative paradigms, students comprehend and creatively analyze issues that affect human rights, well–being, peace, and stability. 

This program generates productive members of society and future leaders passionate about learning, committed to global justice and equity, and inspired by an ethic of service to humanity as a whole.

The International Affairs Program emphasizes the interconnectedness of global, regional, national and local spheres of power and authority within which individuals and groups mediate essential moral and material needs.  Attention focuses on global inclusion, that is, how transnational social processes differentially impact human communities as a result of  history, culture, gender, ethnicity, race, class, geography, ecology, demographics, health, technology, and education. 

Essential to global inclusion are the institutions of governance that affect human sovereignty, allocate resources, and define the public good.  The International Affairs Program promotes a long view of history as the most effective means by which students can be trained to tackle the crucial issues facing humanity in the 21st century.

The program is consistent with Howard University’s historical mission of promoting humanitarian ideals and the intellectual liberation of the disadvantaged both at home and abroad, with a special focus on the African Diaspora.  Through a creative synthesis of theory and practice, the International Affairs Program explores the interconnectedness of the Diaspora with other national and international publics.

Program graduates will have detailed understanding of theories and debates in international affairs and the ability to apply them in interpreting, comprehending and assisting in problem solving within national and global communities. They will:

  • possess a vocabulary of key concepts,
  • develop criteria for measuring the ability of the global community to promote inclusion, democratic governance, and human well-being, and
  • will continue to increase awareness of contemporary international issues via regular reading of newspapers and periodicals.

Students will have honed skills in expository writing, oral presentation, online research through websites and electronic databases, and collaborative research. 

Students will have mastered a second language, improved time management, attention to detail, and developed mentoring relationships with faculty and international affairs practitioners. Practical knowledge of international affairs will have been realized through partnerships, internships, service learning, study abroad, and other hands-on experiences in governments, multilateral agencies, the corporate sector, and nongovernmental organizations.

Graduates from the International Affairs Program will become active scholars, policymakers, and institution builders and increase the presence of African Americans and people of color as future leaders in international affairs and diplomacy.