For over 70 years, Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs has been educating professionals who work in public, private and nonprofit organizations to make a difference in the world. The SIPA Financial Aid Office is dedicated to helping all students explore all available means of helping to finance their education.
Direct funding at SIPA – fellowships, scholarships, and assistantships – is competitive and not available to all admitted or enrolled students, but we encourage everyone to apply for this funding. Awards to first-year students are in the form of fellowships or scholarships that include no employment component, and they are only offered to a limited number of candidates for admission.
SIPA’s financial aid resources are limited; virtually all scholarships are two-year awards awarded at the time of admission, and those scholarships are highly competitive. Assistantships are available for second year students only. Assistantship compensation is in the form of salary only (effective Fall 2018). For more information, see the “SIPA and Columbia University Funding” link below.
Some SIPA students also rely on student loans as part of their financing strategy, while others are able to secure funding from outside sources, including private charitable foundations, their employer, the government in their home country or professional associations and organizations. Whatever your financing plan will be, the SIPA Financial Aid Office staff is dedicated to working with you to help you reach your goals.
It is very important for students to create a financing plan by the time the enrollment decision is made, and that plan should cover the duration of the academic program (keeping in mind that financial aid is not available for expenses incurred during summers in which a student is not enrolled in classes). Students’ plans typically include a combination of their own and/or family resources, student loans, and whatever funding they may qualify for from SIPA or external agencies.