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UST Offers Degrees for Future Global Leaders

Earn Your Masters in Diplomacy & Strategic Affairs

With all that is going on in the world, the public, private and non-profit sectors’ demand is high for expertise in diplomacy and strategic affairs. University of St. Thomas-Houston’s Department of International Studies & Modern Languages offers degrees to future global leaders. These include the relatively new M.A. program in diplomacy and strategic affairs plus the B.A./M.A. dual degree.

Master’s Degree Positions Students to Go Higher

Dr. Yao-Yuan Yeh, Director for the Master of Diplomacy and Strategic Affairs ProgramDr. Yao-Yuan Yeh, director for the Master of Diplomacy and Strategic Affairs Program, said the MDSA degree can assist students in pursuing higher goals.

“These goals could be applying their learned skills in public and private sectors, serving the State Department or pursuing their doctoral degrees,” Yeh said. “The MDSA curriculum provides students with rich knowledge for cross-disciplinary understanding of international relations and diplomacy, serving as the backbone of a Ph.D career.”

Testimonials from MDSA Graduates

Graduate Antonio Casazza of the MDSA program speaks highly about what he learned.

Antonio Casazza, MDSA ’22, said, “I enjoyed the cross-disciplinary nature of the MDSA program, which combines diplomatic, economic and historic approaches to learning and problem-solving. These lead to a better understanding of other cultures and disciplines. I also learned to use new qualitative and quantitative tools to analyze the international landscape and understand and quantify its long-term societal implications.”

Nathaniel Hill, MDSA '22, said, “The program armed me with a deep and thorough knowledge of international relations, political science, international business, data analysis, world history and economic theory — all absolutely required to compete effectively in any one of those areas today.”

Advantages of the Dual Degree

Yeh went on to explain the Center’s newest combined degree offering. Current International Studies or International Development undergraduates have the option to apply for the dual B.A./M.A. in Diplomacy and Strategic Affairs degree in their junior year. This allows them to work on master’s level curriculum while still an undergrad and finish their B.A. and M.A. in five years.

Preparing Diplomacy and Strategic Affairs Students for Real Jobs

Rick Sindelar, Director of the Center for International StudiesDirector of the Center for International Studies Rick Sindelar teaches the introductory course. He helps prepare students to take on senior positions in diplomacy, strategic analysis and operations of non-governmental organizations.

“We just had a student, who is still earning her master’s, get a job with a company here in Houston working on security issues related to that company’s operations around the world,” Sindelar said. “We’re preparing students to secure real jobs that pay good money and involve some form of diplomacy — not just government diplomacy but business diplomacy and government affairs for a company.”

Within the program, students learn to look at global issues and conflicts through “a holistic interdisciplinary prism.” They discover how to use various methods to understand and solve key issues.

“And my focus in the introduction course is on how diplomacy can be used to advance the strategic affairs of a country without resorting to military force,” added Sindelar.