GPS launches a new evening option for its Master of Advanced Studies in International Affairs career track in Security of the Asia-Pacific

March 2, 2018 | By Amy Robinson | GPS News

The UC San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy (GPS) has expanded its degree program roster with the launch of a new part-time evening option that can be completed in two years for those with at least five years of professional work experience.

Beginning in fall 2018, students can now select this option for the Security of the Asia-Pacific (SAPAC) career track in the Master of Advanced Studies in International Affairs (MAS-IA) degree program.

Professionals in particular from the military, government agencies, defense industry and the nonprofit sector, can advance their careers and organizations with this degree, all in under two years.

“Students in the MAS-IA degree program are often currently employed when they enroll with us. Their work experience gives them valuable insights into our curriculum and we wanted to provide them with an option of staying employed. We are pleased to now offer an evening option to one of our most popular tracks,” said Dean Peter F. Cowhey.

Cowhey added that the core SAPAC career track curriculum focuses on current debates about the security of states, the causes and contexts of conflict, environments and conditions that foster cooperation and the factors that generate both instability and peace.

Program participants gain an interdisciplinary foundation in international affairs and security through core, regional and career track courses and are able to tailor their educational experience through a wide range of elective classes.

“The degree challenges our students to dig deeply into the study of international relations, international political economy, public policy, environmental sustainability and Asia-Pacific security,” said Assistant Dean of Academic Programs Wendy Hunter Barker. “Our graduates in the SAPAC track are experts in analyzing and applying best practices in security studies with other disciplinary perspectives.”

Hunter Barker added that by learning from faculty and top practitioners in the field with security expertise in government, military, industry and NGOs, students develop a practical, analytical tool kit. Furthermore, they study key political, economic and security developments in the Pacific region that are likely to affect their professional careers.

“Students have the opportunity to work side by side with faculty to analyze and address global challenges in the Asia-Pacific region,” said Vice Admiral Robert L. Thomas, Jr., U.S. Navy (ret) and professor of practice at GPS. “They receive state-of-the-art training in security and technology policy, including cybersecurity, defense innovation and China.”

Thomas added that GPS is well positioned to serve the educational needs of active duty military personnel and reserve officers. The MAS-IA degree program is among the elite approved civilian degrees in the nation for the Navy’s Politico-Military curriculum (National Security/International Relations and Diplomacy) and Foreign Area Officers specializing in China, Northeast Asia, Southeast Asia and Latin America.

In addition, the degree fulfills many organizations’ tuition assistance requirements for employees, including the Navy’s Graduate Education Voucher (GEV) program, Marine Corps’ Tuition Assistance program, Coast Guard’s Postgraduate and Advanced Education program and Post-9/11 GI Bill among others.

The SAPAC part-time evening option is now accepting applications for fall 2018. For more information, visit gps.ucsd.edu/masia.