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Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service

The seal of Georgetown University
Established 1919[1]
Type Private
Religious affiliation Roman Catholic (Jesuit)
Dean Carol Lancaster
Students 1,900[1]
Undergraduates 1,400[1]
Postgraduates 500[1]
Location Washington, D.C., 20057, USA
38°54′26″N 77°4′22″W / 38.90722°N 77.07278°W / 38.90722; -77.07278Coordinates: 38°54′26″N 77°4′22″W / 38.90722°N 77.07278°W / 38.90722; -77.07278
Campus Urban
Nickname SFS

The Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service (commonly abbreviated SFS) is a school within Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., United States. Jesuit priest Edmund A. Walsh founded the School of Foreign Service in 1919, recognizing the need for a school that would prepare Americans for roles as diplomats and business professionals in the wake of the U.S.' expanding involvement in the world after World War I. The school predates the U.S. Foreign Service by six years.

Today, SFS hosts a student body of approximately 2,100 from 80 nations each year. It offers an undergraduate program based in the liberal arts, which leads to the Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service degree, as well as six interdisciplinary graduate programs.[1] Its faculty include many distinguished figures in international affairs, such as former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, former U.S. Director of Central Intelligence George Tenet, former President of Poland Aleksander Kwaśniewski, and former Prime Minister of Spain José María Aznar.[2]

The School of Foreign Service is widely recognized as one of the world's leading international affairs schools and is sometimes referred to as the "West Point of the U.S. diplomatic corps."[citation needed] In 2007, the Carnegie Endowment's Foreign Policy magazine ranked the school's undergraduate program fourth in the nation and its master's programs first in the nation.[3] Famous alumni include former U.S. President Bill Clinton, current Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, King Abdullah of Jordan, John Cardinal O’Connor, and Željko Komšić, Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, among others.



The school has evolved from its original emphasis on diplomacy and law to become a center for research and teaching on global affairs. Faculty are today drawn from disciplines such as political science, history, economics and cultural studies, as well as from business, the non-profit sector and international organizations.

Father Edmund A. Walsh, S.J., founder and first dean of the SFS[4]

The school has about 1,300 undergraduates seeking a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service (B.S.F.S.) degree. The undergraduate program is intended to provide a liberal arts education with a focus in international affairs. The SFS is not a pre-professional school. Undergraduates concentrate in International Politics (IPOL), International History (IHIS), Culture and Politics (CULP), International Economics (IECO), International Political Economy (IPEC), Regional and Comparative Studies (RCST), or Science, Technology, & International Affairs (STIA). The STIA program was the first of its kind. Harvard and Georgia Tech, among others, now have STIA programs as well.

Graduate students can pursue six graduate programs: four regional studies programs as well as the Master of Science in Foreign Service (MSFS) and the Master of Arts in Security Studies Program. Graduates go on to careers in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors as well as further higher education. Alumni include current (Jordan, Lithuania, the Philippines, and Bosnia), future (Spain), and recent (United States) heads of state. The current dean of the school is Amb. Robert Gallucci. Notable faculty members at the Walsh School of Foreign Service include former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, former Undersecretary of Defense Douglas Feith, former Polish President Aleksander Kwaśniewski, former National Security Advisor Anthony Lake, Ambassador Donald McHenry, former CIA Director George Tenet, former Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister and current Malaysian Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim, former World Bank VP Callisto Madavo, former Dean Peter Krogh, former USAID head, former Special Envoy for Sudan Andrew Natsios, Ambassador of Israel to the United States Michael Oren, and former Prime Minister of Spain José María Aznar.



Undergraduate programs

The School of Foreign Service's undergraduate program features a rigorous two-year core curriculum including a freshman proseminar, two philosophy courses, two theology courses, two humanities and writing courses, two government courses, three history courses (including two non-Western regional history courses), a four-course economics sequence, and a geopolitics course unique to SFS entitled Map of the Modern World. To graduate, students must also attain proficiency in at least one modern foreign language, demonstrated through successful completion of a specially-designed oral exam (and other requirements as determined by the department).

Following completion of the core, students declare one of the following interdisciplinary majors:

In addition to their major, students may choose from a number of undergraduate certificate programs: African Studies, Arab Studies, Asian Studies, Australian & New Zealand Studies, German and European Studies, International Business Diplomacy, International Development, Muslim-Christian Understanding, Jewish Civilization, Justice & Peace Studies, Latin American Studies, Medieval Studies, Russian & East European Studies, Social & Political Thought, and Women's and Gender Studies.

Graduate programs

Graduate students can pursue six interdisciplinary graduate programs: four regional studies programs as well as the Master of Science in Foreign Service (MSFS) and the Master of Arts in Security Studies Program.

In 2007, and again in 2009, the Carnegie Endowment's Foreign Policy magazine ranked SFS the best U.S. school for master's degrees in international affairs.


The school has published the Georgetown Journal of International Affairs semi-annually since 2000. Each issue includes a "Forum", containing in-depth analysis of particular issues, and nine regular sections.[5]

SFS is also home to International Migration, managed by the Institute for the Study of Migration; and German Politics and Society, under the control of the BMW Center for German and European Studies.

The School of Foreign Service used to publish the National Security Studies Quarterly, but publication has ceased. In addition to more general topics, the journal's special focus is "military technical issues."[6]


The School of Foreign Service main campus is located in northwest Washington, D.C.. It opened another campus, which is known as SFS-Q, in Doha's Education City, in the Emirate of Qatar in 2005. Nearly all SFS undergraduates spend a minimum of one semester or a summer abroad, choosing from direct matriculation programs around the globe as well as programs of other universities and those run by Georgetown. Two of the most popular of Georgetown's own programs are those based in the University's villas in Alanya, Turkey and Fiesole, Italy.

Main campus

Healy Hall, one of the main campus' most iconic buildings

Georgetown University's undergraduate schools and medical campus are located together on Main Campus, which sits on the "Hilltop", an elevated site in the heart of Washington above the Potomac River. The campus' main gates are located at the intersection of 37th and O Streets, NW. Georgetown University Medical Center is on the northern side of campus, best accessed through the multiple entrances on Reservoir Road between 37th and 39th Sts, NW.

The main campus measures just over 100 acres (0.4 km²) and is home to 58 administrative, classroom, and other buildings, including student dorms and apartments capable of accommodating 80 percent of undergraduates as well as various athletic facilities. Most buildings employ collegiate Gothic and Georgian brick architecture. Campus green areas include fountains, a cemetery, large clusters of flowers, groves of trees, and open quadrangles.[7] The main campus has traditionally centered on Dahlgren Quadrangle, although Red Square, the brick-lined area in front of the Intercultural Center (ICC), has generally replaced it as the focus of student life.[8] Healy Hall, built in Flemish Romanesque style from 1877 to 1879, is the architectural gem of Georgetown's campus, and is a National Historic Landmark.[9] Both Healy Hall and the Georgetown University Astronomical Observatory, built in 1844, are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[10]

In late 2003, the school completed the Southwest Quad, bringing a new 907-bed student dorm, an expansive dining hall, an underground parking facility, and new Jesuit Residence to the campus.[11] The school's first performing arts center, named for Royden B. Davis, was completed in November 2005, while longer-term projects include a self-contained business school campus, construction of a unified sciences center, and expanded athletic facilities.[12]

Doha, Qatar

In 2002, the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development presented the School of Foreign Service with the resources and space to open a facility in the new Education City in Doha, Qatar.[13] SFS-Qatar opened in 2005; as of 2008, SFS-Q had a student body of 145.[14]. The first graduating class of SFS-Q, all of whom will receive BSFS degrees with a major of International Politics, will receive their diplomas in May 2009.

Notable alumni/-ae


  1. ^ a b c d e "History and Mission". Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service. October 14, 2005. Retrieved 2008-04-29. 
  2. ^ Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, Faculty List
  3. ^ Foreign Policy, "Inside the Ivory Tower"
  4. ^ Photograph of Fr. Walsh from Georgetown University Digital Collection
  5. ^ Georgetown Journal of International Affairs, official site
  6. ^ Georgetown University Security Studies Program, official site
  7. ^ "Georgetown Goes Greener". Blue & Gray. July 5, 2007. Retrieved 2007-07-18. 
  8. ^ Simpao, Bernadette. "Red Square". The Hoya. Retrieved 2007-07-24. 
  9. ^ George, Hardy (October 1972). "Georgetown University's Healy Building". The Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 31 (3): 208. doi:10.2307/988766. Retrieved 2007-08-16. 
  10. ^ "District of Columbia Inventory of Historic Sites" (PDF). District of Columbia: Office of Planning. June 17, 2005. Retrieved 2007-08-31. 
  11. ^ Timiraos, Nick (August 22, 2003). "From Hole to Home, Southwest Quad Completed". The Hoya. Retrieved 2007-05-07. 
  12. ^ Timiraos, Nick (October 14, 2005). "Building The Hilltop's Future". The Hoya. Retrieved 2007-07-18. 
  13. ^ Heberle, Robert (May 20, 2005). "SFS to Establish Qatar Campus". The Hoya. Retrieved 2007-08-04. 
  14. ^ "Studying International Affairs". Georgetown University School of Foreign Service in Qatar. Retrieved 2007-07-26. 

External links


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