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Diversity and Inclusion at SIS


Rebecca Davis

Contact: Rebecca Coughlin

Director, SIS Diversity & Inclusion Initiatives

SIS 112C


Get Involved!

SIS Exploring Identities Symbol

The SIS Exploring Identities Series is an event series that expands career pathways of historically underrepresented students and creates a more inclusive community.

Learn More about the Series

Congratulations Class of 2017!

SIS Commencement Speaker 2017

SIS Commencement Speaker Curtis O'Neal (SIS/MA '17): "With this education, we have been tasked with tackling some of the globe's greatest challenges.... If we are going to wage peace, we will need more than a piece of paper.... We will need courage-- the courage to stand for justice; the courage to embrace and overcome adversity; the courage to amplify the voices who historically have been unheard." Watch Curtis O'Neal's full speech


Why Diversity Matters at SIS

In the global context of the 21st Century, SIS believes a diverse population and an inclusive school climate are essential components for preparation to work in the field of international relations. Today’s complex issues and challenges require innovative ideas and perspectives of people from different backgrounds, cultures, and places along with the skills to engage successfully with these differences.

SIS understands its position as a top ten school of international affairs as an opportunity to prepare a more diverse next generation of leaders in the field that is well-equipped to see differences as a pathway to greater creativity and capacity.  Read more about the SIS vision for diversity and inclusion.

3rd Annual SIS International Affairs Expo Connects Students and Employers Committed to Diversity

SIS students and professional engage during speed mentoring

On Thursday, February 9th 2017, students from the SIS Community and international affairs professionals with a shared interest in diversity in the field gathered for an evening of mentorship, mingling, and learning. The 3rd Annual International Affairs Expo was an interactive event designed to connect students with organizations that are committed to diversity and inclusion in their organizations.

The three-hour event was uniquely designed to include three parts—a favorite being the speed mentoring activity, which helps students and professional mentors engage in relevant, relationship building conversations at a fast pace. When asked about the experience, one student reflected, “As a woman, I appreciated hearing about navigating a male-dominated field.” The event was part of the SIS Exploring Identities Series which exists, in part, to help broaden the social capital of SIS students from historically underrepresented groups, including students of color and first generation college students.  Read more

SIS Community Dialogue Explores Race and Ethnicity

SIS students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends gathered for a community dialogue on "How to Create Greater Understanding across Race and Ethnicity" in the Abramson Family Founders Room. This dialogue was part of the SIS Exploring Identities Series, which works to increase awareness of diversity-related issues throughout the School and to help individuals build greater capacity and ownership for creating an increasingly inclusive environment. Read more.

SIS Navigators!

SIS Diversity Event Trio Interacting

SIS invites first year graduate students who identify as people of color or 1st in their families to graduate from college to connect with an SIS Navigator. These SIS staff volunteers can be a valuable resource as you begin to pave your way through graduate school.

Learn about the SIS Navigators

SIS Exploring Identities Event: International Affairs Expo

SIS Diversity Event:  International Affairs Expo 2017

The 3rd Annual International Affairs Expo included 32 professionals who came to campus to participate in the speed mentoring session and 16 organizations with a commitment to diversity that attended the tabling session.

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Get Involved!

SIS Exploring Identities Symbol

The SIS Exploring Identities Series is an event series that expands career pathways of historically underrepresented students and creates a more inclusive community.

Learn More about the Series

What is the Global Access Pipeline (GAP)?

International students at commencement

SIS and GAP provide networking opportunities for historically underrepresented students and to expose younger students to professional pathways in international affairs.

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Funding Opportunities

Unique funding opportunities are available to students from historically underrepresented groups for graduate education and international experiences. Learn more.


What does SIS mean by "historically underrepresented groups?"

SIS recognizes that certain demographic groups have been underrepresented in graduate education and international affairs because of social and economic structures that have denied them access. These historically underrepresented groups have particular experiences and perspectives that deserve our focused attention and targeted support. These include, but are not limited to, domestic students of color, first generation college students, veterans, and low-income students as well as women in regard to leadership roles.


languages are spoken by current SIS graduate students. 
Interested in learning a language and traveling abroad?  Check out the Boren Fellowship and other opportunities through the Office of Merit Awards.

Learn More