Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Application Deadline Coming Up!

Are you planning to apply for a degree for experienced professionals or one of our Hopkins-Nanjing center programs? If you are, make sure you mark your calendar for the deadline coming up.

MIPP, MAGP, HNC Application Deadline

The Master of Arts in Global Policy (MAGP), Master of International Public Policy (MIPP), Master of Arts in International Studies (MAIS), and the HNC Certificate/MA degree deadline is FEBRUARY 1, 2018.

Here are some helpful instructions to help guide you through your application process:

Degrees at Hopkins-Nanjing Center
HNC Certificate/MA Instructions (Nanjing, China/ Bologna, Italy/ Washington, DC)

Degrees for Experienced Professionals


What time is the deadline?
The deadline for the application will be at 11:59 PM (ET).

What if my documents arrive late?
We strongly recommend that you submit all your documents by the deadline. It makes it easier for our office to process your completed file in order for the Admissions Committee to read your application. If for some situation, you run into a challenge with submitting any documents, send our office an email at sais.dc.admissions@jhu.edu.

For any questions, please send our office an email at sais.dc.admissions@jhu.edu.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Application Deadline Reminder

If you are planning to apply to the Master of Arts (MA), Master of Arts in International Affairs (MAIA), Masters of Arts in International Economics and Finance (MIEF), Masters of Arts in Global Risk (MAGR), or the Diploma in International Studies, we wanted to send you a courteous reminder that the deadline is January 8, 2018.

For specific guidelines on how to apply to each program, you can find a pdf with detailed instructions below:

HNC Certificate/MA Instructions (Nanjing, China/ Bologna, Italy/ Washington, DC)
Doctor of Philosophy Instructions (Bologna, Italy/ Washington, DC)

Degrees for Experienced Professionals

Non-Degree Programs


What time is the deadline?
The deadline for the application will be at 11:59 PM (ET).

What if my documents arrive late?
We strongly recommend that you submit all your documents by the deadline. It makes it easier for our office to process your completed file in order for the Admissions Committee to read your application. If for some situation, you run into a challenge with submitting any documents, send our office an email at sais.dc.admissions@jhu.edu.

For any questions or if you would like to speak with an admissions representative, send us an email to sais.dc.admissions@jhu.edu.

Good luck!

Monday, January 1, 2018

January 2018 Recruitment Events

Virtual Information Sessions:

On-Campus Information Sessions:


Office Hours:

Coffee Chat:

Interested in meeting with a current student to learn more about our school and programs? Send us an email at sais.dc.admissions@jhu.edu to set up a time during the winter break (December 22-26 and January 3-5) to chat with a current Master of Arts (MA) student in Washington, DC. The coffee is on us!

Friday, December 22, 2017

Congratulations Presidential Management Fellows, 2018

A huge congratulation to the 19 Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) Class of 2018 Finalists from Johns Hopkins SAIS! 

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

2018 Admissions Guideline: The Résumé/CV

When it comes to writing the résumé for your Johns Hopkins SAIS application, it's important to write it in a way that will really highlight and strengthen the many skills you've developed through your experiences.

How long should my résumé/CV be? 
Many recent college graduates are told their résumé/CV should be no more than a page long, which is true if you’re applying for a job and you don’t have a lot of work experience under your belt. However, for a graduate school application, you can get away with a longer résumé - assuming you have enough experience to warrant it.

What should I emphasize on my résumé/CV?
We are looking for two things when reviewing an applicant’s résumé/CV: professional readiness and leadership potential. Keeping that in mind, there are a few things that you’ll want to highlight. You’ll want to demonstrate progressive responsibility in terms of your work so we can see how you’ve grown professionally.  Since we’re looking for leadership potential, you’ll also want to list not only leadership experiences in extracurricular or volunteer activities but how your work experience helped you to develop leadership skills.

Is there a specific format?
Nope. We don't have a specific template we're looking for. Just make sure it's clear and easy to read.

Any other tips? 
  1. Talk to your school’s career services office about how to format your résumé/CV. There are also lots of resources online and books that can provide guidance. A well-formatted résumé/CV is crucial to a successful career. 
  2. Make sure you give us information/detail about your job responsibilities, not just the job title. Many job titles are organization-specific and don’t really tell us what you did in your job.
  3. Know when to balance relevancy with gaps in your résumé/CV. You don’t want to just list things that aren’t relevant, but if you do have a big gap in your résumé, and you feel that it is important to explain the gap, let us know.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

2018 Admissions Guideline: Analytical Essay

The Analytical Essay topic is, to put it bluntly, pretty vague:
Discuss an issue of national or international importance and its concern to you.
Not surprisingly, we get a lot of questions about this: topic, format, word limit, etc. Here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions we receive. 

What is the format of this essay?

There is no one format for writing this essay. Some applicants write op-ed style essays, others write their essay in the form of a policy memo, and some even write in the style of a mini research paper with citations. Think about which writing style can help best express your thoughts clearly. 

Are citations required? 

If the style of paper you choose to write calls for citations, then go for it; however, it is not required.

Will citations contribute to my word count?

No, it will not, but make sure you still remember to keep the 600 word limit in mind. Some of the most successful essays are the ones that are concise and clear.

Does the topic need to be related to the concentration I indicate on my application?

Not necessarily, but most applicants do choose to write on a relevant topic. Why is that? Because most applicants select an area that they already have some experience or knowledge about the topic. You should choose a subject matter that you're well-versed on; now is probably not the time to write about something new (to you).

Basically, we intentionally left the topic vague because we want to assess how you choose to examine a topic that matters to you. It's going to tell us a lot about your perspective as a candidate and as a person. There's no right or wrong answer to this one. It's more about getting to know who you are as a student of international relations and future leader impacting the world. 

Friday, December 1, 2017

December 2017 Recruitment Events

Virtual Information Sessions:

On-Campus Information Sessions:

 Office Hours:

Class Visitations/Interviews:

 Class visitations and optional interviews are now available under MySAIS. If you haven't already, make sure you create a MySAIS account to have access to the class visitation/interview calendar.

Click here to get a step by step guideline to reserve your spot.

Our office will be closed December 23-January 1 for the holiday

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

2018 Admissions Guideline: Statement of Purpose

The Statement of Purpose essay (sometimes also referred to as the Personal Statement) is an integral piece of your application. I like to think of the Statement of Purpose as the keystone of an application - when executed well, it pulls all those pieces together to create a cohesive whole.

So, what is the Statement of Purpose? It's your story. Who you are, where you are, where you're going, and how Johns Hopkins SAIS fits into that picture. Your Statement of Purpose is how you personalize your application to show the Admissions Committee the real person behind the transcripts, recommendations, and test scores. With the Statement of Purpose, we expect you to not only show us why we should admit you but also why Johns Hopkins SAIS is the best fit for you.

A couple of tips for your Statement of Purpose:
  • Statement of Purpose/Personal Statement essays questions can be pretty similar from school to school. Resist the temptation to write one generic essay and submit it to every school.  International relations schools are each different, and we look for different things in an essay. A good essay for SAIS might be a poor fit for another school and vice versa.
  • The first rule of writing anything (not just an essay) is to think about your audience.  Your audience is the Admissions Committee and faculty.  Ask yourself, what does the committee want to know about me?  What information are they looking for?  
  • Good writing is concise writing.  A concise writer can express more in 500 words than a mediocre writer writing 2000 words.  The word limit on the Statement of Purpose is 600 words. 
  • Make sure you revise, revise, and revise.  
  • Revision means that you'll end up spending a lot of time working on this essay.  Don't expect to dash off your essay a few nights before the application deadline and think it will be the best representation of your abilities.  Start brainstorming now, give the essay the amount of time and attention that it deserves, and submit the best version of the essay.

Friday, November 17, 2017

2018 Admissions Guideline: Transcripts

We get a lot of questions in the Admissions Office about transcripts: where to send them, what formats we accept, if we require translations and/or evaluations, etc. Here are some answers to those questions.

What does “official transcripts” mean?

An official transcript is issued to Johns Hopkins SAIS from the college, either electronically (via a service such as eScrip) or in hard copy (paper).  To make the process quicker, we prefer receiving transcripts electronically from your school; however, if you decide to take the paper route, you can (and should) request that the school send the transcript directly to Johns Hopkins SAIS.  If you choose to deliver the transcript to our office yourself, it still needs to be sealed in the original envelope, with your college registrar’s stamp over the seal.

Can I submit unofficial transcripts?

Applicants may upload unofficial transcripts as part of the application process, but will be required to submit official copies prior to enrollment. 

Where do I send my transcript?

Transcripts in hard copy should be sent to the Office of Admissions in Washington, D.C.: 

Johns Hopkins SAIS 
Office of Admissions 
1740 Massachusetts Avenue NW 
Washington, D.C. 20036 

Transcripts in electronic copy should be sent to sais.dc.admissions@jhu.edu.

What does “all college-level coursework” mean? Isn’t my degree-granting transcript enough?  

Most students have at least a few transfer credits on their undergraduate transcript for various reasons, ranging from study abroad to summer programs to switching schools.  You will need to submit transcripts for ALL of your coursework.  We want to see how you’ve done in all your coursework–not just some of the schoolwork.
If they list the course titles AND grades for all transferred credits on your degree-granting transcript, then you don’t need any additional paperwork.  If they don’t, ask if they have copies of the other school’s transcript in your files and ask them to include copies with your degree-granting transcript. 
If neither of these options works for you, you’ll need to contact multiple schools to request all the transcripts you need.  Additionally, if you’ve taken any additional coursework post-graduation (for credit) you’ll need to supply those transcripts as well.

What about international transcripts?  

  • What if I received my bachelor’s degree from a U.S. institution and I completed a semester or two abroad?

The first thing you need to do is check your undergraduate transcript and see how the courses are recorded. We need to see both the courses and the grades listed on your transcript. If the transcript lists both, then you’re covered and you won’t need to do anything else. However, if your school only lists the courses as transfer credits, you’ll need to provide an official copy of your study abroad transcript.
This is easier than you might think. Any U.S. school that accepted study abroad credits will have an official copy of your study abroad transcript in your student file; all you have to do is ask them to send a copy of it to the SAIS Admissions Office and you’re ready to go.

  • What if I received my bachelor’s degree from a non-U.S. institution?

First, you’ll need to determine if your school will issue a transcript in English. Many international institutions are prepared to do so; if your school is an international institution, you’ll need to acquire an English-language copy in a sealed envelope (don’t open it!) and forward it to our office.

If your school does not provide transcripts in English, you are asked to provide an official translation of the entire transcript and an explanation of the grading system of the university. You are strongly encouraged to use a credential evaluation service, particularly if you are not sure of how to obtain original transcripts or face difficulties obtaining them. See the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services for a list of providers. Transcripts and translations must be received by the Johns Hopkins SAIS Office of Admissions before the relevant deadline, so please make any requests well in advance.

  • What if I took non-credit language courses abroad?
SAIS doesn’t require official transcripts for non-credit language courses, so you don’t need to submit these transcripts - you can indicate language experiences on your application and your resume. If you want to send us photocopies/scanned copies as proof of these courses, you’re certainly welcome to do so, but we don’t require them.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

2018 Admissions Guideline: Preparing for the Interview

The last day for an optional interview for the fall 2018 MA application is December 8, 2017.

Did you know that Johns Hopkins SAIS offers optional interviews for MA applicants both on-campus and on Skype?

Interviews are a great way to individualize your application and to shine your personal strengths in addition to what's written in your application. In other words: an interview makes your application more competitive and adds an extra touch to your application. It also gives you the opportunity to demonstrate that you have the professional focus and preparation to thrive at a place like Johns Hopkins SAIS, as well as the chance to show your interest in our program.

Here are a few tips to help you prepare for your interview.

Tip #1: Sign up early

Slots for interviews are limited, and because interview slots fill up rather quickly, it is in your best interest to register as soon as you are certain of your availability. You do not need to start or submit an application in order to sign up for an interview.

To learn how to sign up for an interview, check out this blog post.

Tip #2: Show up early

Whether you're planning to do an in-person interview or a Skype interview, make sure you show up early. First impressions are always important, and the last thing you want to do is make the interviewer wait for you to show up. If you show up early, you can make sure you have all your documents ready, calm your nerves, and if you're Skyping in, you can make sure that the internet is connected and working.

Tip #3: Dress the part

You should dress the way you want to be remembered. First impressions can have a lasting impression, so it's a good idea to come dressed professionally.

Tip #4: Have your resume/ CV ready

It should be noted that we do not share any piece of your application with your interviewer, so be prepared to provide a copy of your resume or CV so that the interviewer can have some background information. If you interview in person, that means bringing along an additional hard copy. If you interview via Skype that means sending the resume or CV digitally through Skype.

Tip #5: Practice and be prepared

Practice with questions that might be asked. Trust me, you'll be less nervous if you prepare. You should expect the interview to be evaluative as well as informative. This means your interviewer may assess any and everything from your intellectual curiosity to your professional acumen.

Among other topics, be prepared to discuss your goals, how a Johns Hopkins SAIS education will help propel you towards these goals, and what unique qualities/experiences you might contribute to the SAIS community. Our advice is to prepare for this interview as you would any high-stakes interview.

Tip #6: Ask questions

During the interview, ask your interviewer thoughtful and relevant questions to assess if the program is a right fit for you. Our interviewers are second-year MA students currently in the program so they can help provide honest answers about the school and the program.

Rebecca Chun
Admissions Coordinator