Thinking About Graduate School? It’s All Global Now.

By Carmen Iezzi Mezzera, Executive Director, Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs (@apsiainfo)

Business. Politics. Education. Public Health. Communications. Job-seekers in every field are realizing a new reality: most careers today have an international component to them.

It’s all global now.

Whether you’re interested in the public, private, or non-governmental sector, you cannot escape the globalization of the job market. An understanding of international affairs is critical for success.

People and products move fluidly around the world. Ninety-five percent of the world’s consumers live outside of the United States. One in five American jobs is tied to international trade (Texas alone has seen an 84% increase in such jobs in the last 20 years).

Are you ready? Can you follow the economic, security, and political factors influencing the places with which you’d like to do business? Do you know how to attract international tourists (and the millions of dollars in revenue they represent) to your community? Can you communicate successfully with your constituents and colleagues from different linguistic and cultural backgrounds? Can you monitor developments around the world, identify challenges, and recommend ways for your organization to address them?

So, How Do I Prepare?

Job-seekers in every sector need to prepare now for the job market of the future with key international competencies.

Know how to evaluate trends across a global landscape. Be ready to explain other countries’ political, economic, social, and security situations so as to anticipate where opportunities and risks might emerge. Learn to communicate with those from different backgrounds and pay attention to cultural cues to guide a successful conversation or negotiation.

While many presume that the only path to success lies with a law or MBA program, the study of international affairs blends broad preparation in critical thinking, quantitative analysis, public communications, project management, and teamwork with deep regional, cultural, and economic expertise.

This powerful combination distinguishes international affairs degrees from other professional programs. It provides the flexibility and knowledge to navigate the changes expected in the workforce of the future.  It supplies the tools to understand and explain the historical, social, commercial, and political dynamics, which influence current and emerging actors.

It’s all global now. With training in international affairs, you can be a competitive candidate for jobs today and into the future.

(a version of this post originally lived at

Want to learn more? Join the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs (APSIA) in Austin on September 17 for a Graduate School Recruitment Fair. More information at

Leave your thought