Unprecedented levels of forced displacement and natural disasters in recent years have created humanitarian crises on a massive scale. These impact the health, safety, and well-being of disaster-affected populations and have far reaching impacts on world peace and stability. The demand for professional humanitarian aid workers has increased tremendously, fueled by the need to deliver humanitarian response in line with legal, ethical, and professional guidelines.

Community meeting with refugee returnees

What you’ll learn

Understand the legal and professional principles, standards, laws, and frameworks governing humanitarian action as well as the theory behind it.

Grapple with the major critiques of humanitarian action and its ensuing reform and review process.

Learn ethically sound qualitative research methods and practice identifying needs and gaps and providing evidence-based recommendations for interventions and response in the various humanitarian sectors.

Design and implement a crisis management plan and humanitarian response that will aid and protect populations affected by disaster and forge collaborative relationships that will create more successful responses.

How it works

In this one-year program, get hands-on, graduate-level training in humanitarian assistance and crisis management. You’ll spend a semester each in Jordan and Uganda, which together host nearly three million refugees, meeting with NGO workers, observing humanitarian assistance in action, and conducting fieldwork. You’ll also experience a 10-day field visit to Geneva, a global hub for humanitarian assistance, where you’ll learn about humanitarian policy and advocacy and contrast the work of humanitarian and UN agency headquarters with hands-on work conducted on the ground.

In the final semester, you’ll put your learning into practice during a field practicum at a humanitarian aid organization in either Jordan or Uganda.

As someone with over 30 years of humanitarian experience, I know that skilled and thoughtful management of crises and disasters is sorely needed. We live in a time with unprecedented numbers of people displaced from their homes around the globe, and with a tragically steady stream of emergencies coming at us through conflict, disease, famine, and natural events, many significantly worsened by climate change. This new SIT program responds to a global demand for compassionate, highly competent professionals.

—Abby Maxman, President and CEO of Oxfam America

*Accreditation pending