The collaboration between SIPA students and the organizations benefits both parties. The organizations benefit from the expertise of SIPA students, who have a wide variety of professional and educational backgrounds and who are in the final semester of a demanding, two-year professional degree program at one of the leading schools of international and public affairs in the world. The students benefit from the opportunity to put learning into practice. We seek to partner with organizations that can offer a project that is timely, but not urgent, which can be completed within a four-month period, that is of value both to the organization itself and to the learning experience of students—and produces actionable recommendations, which ideally will be utilized by the client within the near future.
If you are interested in becoming a workshop client, please refer to the specific programs:
- Capstone Workshop
- Workshop in Development Practice (EPD Workshop)
- Workshops in Applied Earth Systems Management & in Applied Earth Systems Policy Analysis (ESP Workshops)
The workshop process begins at the end of the spring semester (late April) through the summer (June–August), when possible project ideas are discussed with clients. By mid-September, a preliminary Terms of Reference (ToR) is developed. In October, students submit a formal application to the Capstone program, rank ordering their first through fifth choice. Students are selected by the faculty advisor and are matched with projects based on their demonstrated skill sets and interests. Supported by a Columbia faculty advisor, each student team starts work by late January on a draft work plan. Based on their desk and field research, each team prepares a report and recommendations for review by the client in late April. Students work on average 10-12 hours per week on their project.
For more information, please refer to our FAQ page.
If you are interested in becoming a potential Capstone client, please complete the Capstone Client Application.
Workshop in Development Practice (EPD Workshop)
The workshop process begins over the summer (June–August), when possible project ideas are discussed with clients. By September, preliminary terms of reference are developed. In October, teams of students are matched with projects based on their language proficiency, skill sets and interests. Supported by a faculty advisor, each student team starts work by early November on a draft work plan. Depending on the needs of the project and available budget, students can travel to carry out field work over Columbia's winter and spring holidays (in early January and in mid-March). Based on their desk and field research, each team prepares a report and recommendations for review by the client in April. The student teams present their final reports during a two-day workshop at SIPA at the end of April. For clients who cannot attend the workshop, other arrangements can be made to present the students’ findings and recommendations to the client and other stakeholders.
Please contact Eugenia McGill, the Workshop Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or Ilona Vinklerova, the EPD Concentration Manager, at email@example.com for more information about becoming a workshop client.
Workshops in Applied Earth Systems Management & in Applied Earth Systems Policy Analysis (ESP Workshops)
Please refer to the Master in Public Administration in Environmental Science Policy website for more information.