The MAIS Experience

What can you expect? The MAIS Experience

SFU’s MA in International Studies (MAIS) draws graduate students from across Canada and around the world who are seeking an experience that combines academic rigor with a more personalized approach to education. The School for International Studies makes this possible by offering small size classes in core courses to ensure that all students graduate with the knowledge and analytic skills needed to work successfully in an increasingly globalized world. In addition, students are able to choose elective courses on topics and/or regions of personal interest and to design their graduating project as either a thesis based on primary research or two analytical essays. This combination ensures that our students enjoy the experience of the MA program and are also well prepared for the career opportunities that lie ahead.


Lauren Rattray, Tanzania

Siran Huang, Ecuador

Jennifer Johnson, Ethiopia

Tanner Boisjolie, Indonesia and South Africa

As well, many students pursuing their MA in International Studies gain stimulating work experiences through SFU’s co-op program. Our MAIS students have completed co-op work terms with foundations, think-tanks, non-governmental organizations, private corporations, Canadian embassies abroad and other countries’ offices in Canada, and many departments of the Canadian government (e.g. Global Affairs, National Defence, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, Indigenous and Northern Affairs, Heritage). Some of our graduates have gone on to be ‘bridged’ from these co-op positions in to permanent employment.

There is no cookie-cutter approach to fashioning a career that aspires to be internationally engaged and impactful. Our MA students come from different life, education, and work experiences which makes for stimulating peer-to-peer learning and friendships as well as enriched networks. Moreover, our students go on to put their MAIS degrees to work for them and others in myriad ways. We value what our students bring to the School for International Studies and we seek to support each student in making their MAIS education as meaningful as possible to their chosen trajectory.