SIT at a Glance

School for International Training was officially established in 1964. However, its roots date back to 1932 when Dr. Donald Watt founded The Experiment in International Living, which aims to improve understanding across cultures and nations by sending US students abroad to live with families in their communities in order to expand their worldviews. 

In the early 1960s, Sargent Shriver—the first director of the Peace Corps and an alumnus of The Experiment—called on The Experiment to train the earliest Peace Corps volunteers. This led to the establishment of SIT. In the late 1960s, SIT introduced programs in teaching English and, in 1971, the school awarded its first master’s degree for the Program in Intercultural Management. 

Read more about SIT’s history 
Read more about SIT’s mission.

Critical Global Issues 

SIT develops our programs within a framework of the most critical global issues of the day so that the next generation of leaders has the expertise and intercultural understanding they need to engage all identities, perspectives, and cultures with respectful, enduring, and meaningful responses. 

SIT’s critical global issues framework includes: 


SIT Graduate Institute has 75 faculty members, including regular faculty, adjunct and affiliated faculty, and professors emeriti. 

With expertise in conflict transformation, international development, English and foreign language learning, international education, social justice, management, and human rights, faculty at SIT Graduate Institute come together at an institution that bridges practice and theory. 


SIT Graduate Institute has more than 9,800* alumni worldwide. In addition, more than 3,400 people around the world have completed the SIT TESOL Certificate program.

*Includes alumni of SIT’s graduate, certificate, and CONTACT Peacebuilding programs, as well as the former World Issues Program. 

Distinguished alumni include: 

  • Jody Williams – 1997 Nobel Peace Prize recipient 
  • Fadia Thabet – 2017 International Women of Courage Award recipient 
  • Ryuko Kubota – 2020 recipient of the AAAL Award (American Association for Applied Linguistics) for Distinguished Scholarship & Service 
  • Haruko Arimura – member of the House of Councillors, Diet of Japan (Liberal Democratic Party) 
  • Gamal Helal – Senior Diplomatic Interpreter & Special Adviser to the US Government 
  • Abby Maxman – President and CEO, Oxfam America 
  • Richard W. Roberts – Senior Judge, United States District Court for the District of Columbia 
  • Richard Ryscavage* – internationally recognized expert on migration, Director of the Center for Faith and Public Life and a professor of sociology and international studies at Fairfield University 
  • Joseph Sebarenzi – former President of the Parliament of Rwanda 
  • Jamie Tincher – Deputy Mayor, Saint Paul, Minnesota 
  • Ambassador Pamela White – US diplomat, former US Ambassador to Haiti and The Gambia 


SIT President 

Dr. Sophia Howlett is the President of SIT. 

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