Tuesday, January 31, 2012

What's challenging about applying to SAIS Bologna?

We have the results of our latest poll. But first a few reminders.
  • If you are having difficulties uploading documents to the online application system, please send us an email at admissions@jhubc.it and we'll help you out.
  • The online system will not shut down at midnight February 1. But if you are not able to complete your application by midnight your time, please send us an email at admissions@jhubc.it explaining.
  • Our mailing address for transcripts and other hard copies is:
                 Johns Hopkins SAIS Bologna Center
                 via Belmeloro, 11
                 40126 Bologna
Now for the results of the poll. The question was: What have you found most challenging in applying to SAIS Bologna?

Here is the breakdown of answers:

Statement of purpose 27%
Analytical essay 25%
Managing the financial commitment 22%
Lining up referees to write letters of recommendation 9%
Comparing SAIS Bologna to other schools 5%
English-language requirement 5%
Understanding the application process 3%
Understanding the academic requirements 3%
Dealing with the Admissions team 2%

We are not surprised the statement of purpose and the analytical essay are the biggest challenges. They form a core section of any candidacy, and applicants do well to pay close attention to these elements.

We hope our posts on the analytical essay and the statement of purpose have been helpful. They have been far and away the most popular posts since we launched this journal 14 months ago.

Managing the financial commitment is a key challenge, too. This is the way it should be. As we have written before here, graduate school is a major investment for anyone, and it's important to weigh the costs and the benefits, both of which can be significant. We think the benefits of a SAIS education are very significant, and our more than 6,500 alumni around the world would attest to that.

Finally, we are certainly glad that the Admissions team did not pose the biggest challenge!

Nelson Graves

Monday, January 30, 2012

The finish line is nigh

It's almost the deadline for applications from non-U.S. students to SAIS Bologna.

Some candidates have submitted their dossiers while others are putting the finishing touches on theirs.

To facilitate matters for those who have yet to finish, we will try to answer the most frequently asked questions.

Some applicants have had trouble uploading documents via the online system. Last week we published a post detailing the required computer settings. If you've followed the checklist and are still unable to upload, please send us an email at admissions@jhubc.it.

We expect to receive completed applications by the deadline of February 1. However, our system will not automatically shut down then. If you know that your application will not be complete by the deadline, please send us an email at admissions@jhubc.it.

Non-U.S. students to SAIS Bologna are not required to pay an application fee. If you are asked to do so, please send us a message.

While most documents can be submitted online, transcripts and standardized test scores are not. If you are mailing hard documents to us, our address is:

Johns Hopkins SAIS Bologna Center
Admissions Office
via Belmeloro, 11
40126 Bologna

We need to receive official copies of your transcripts and standardized test scores. We accept transcripts electronically if your university Registrar's Office sends them directly to us. Standardized tests should be sent directly to us by the examining board.

If you know your transcripts or standardized test scores will not reach us by February 1, drop us a line at admissions@jhubc.it to let us know. We may ask you to send us a scanned copy while we wait for the original copies to arrive by post.

Letters of recommendation can be submitted online by the referee. If your referee has yet to submit the letter, please urge them to do so as soon as possible. In case you have trouble getting the letter, or the reference is being sent via post, be sure to let us know.

If something is missing from your application, we will notify you soon. In the first half of February we will notify candidates whose applications are complete.

Interview dates and locations will set shortly after the deadline. We expect to conduct them from the end of February through March. Candidates can be interviewed in person, on the phone or via Skype. There is no advantage or disadvantage in opting for an in-person interview. In fact, most candidates are interviewed over the phone or via Skype. But members of our Admissions Committee will be travelling to some cities in Europe and North America.

Before starting courses at SAIS, incoming students must have mastered the principles of micro and macroeconomics. (Note this is not a prerequisite to apply.) Admitted candidates are informed in their letter of admission whether they have already met the economics requirement. We'll provide more information on the economics requirement after the deadline. For now, you can take a look at last year's post.

The Admission Committee will meet at the end of March. Its decisions, including financial aid awards, will be communicated to applicants in the first half of April.

Amina Abdiuahab

Friday, January 27, 2012

SAIS Bologna students stretch their horizons

Ethiopia, Egypt, London, Jordan, Bosnia, Brussels, Switzerland, Florence, Dubai, Spain, Genoa, Portugal, Vienna.

SAIS Bologna students are on semester break next week, and their destinations give a taste of their interests and international outlook.

I spoke to a smattering of students the other day during a break in exam week and asked them what they planned to do next week. You can hear their answers in the video below.

Some themes emerge.

Many will be going to London and Brussels on trips organized by the Career Services department. In those two cities they will meet executives and policy makers, many of them SAIS alumni who provide insight into job opportunities.

Others will be going to Sarajevo on an annual trip organized by the Center for Constitutional Studies and Democratic Development (CCSDD). We wrote a post about this last year.

Some will be exploring countries in Europe, Africa and the Middle East which are within relatively easy reach by plane. Others will be staying put in Bologna -- to play in an orchestra for Italian President Giorgio Napolitano, to write a thesis, to explore summer internships.

Towards the end of the break most SAIS Bologna students will be congregating in Vienna for another annual rite -- the Austrian ball. We hope the dancers will return to Bologna with photos of this stately affair that we can share with our readers next month.

If you are reading this via email, you can see the video by clicking here.

Nelson Graves

Thursday, January 26, 2012

A note to candidates using our new online application system

Technology is great. But at times it can try one's patience.

This year applicants to SAIS Bologna are able to submit their applications using a secure online system. The system allows candidates to upload all documents online. Even authors of letters of reference can submit their recommendations using the online platform.

We don't want you feeling like this!
This is a huge improvement on the past when candidates were asked to mail most of their documents. It is easier for candidates and saves them money, and it spares us time and trouble at the receiving end.

Some candidates, however, have experienced problems uploading documents. Our experts are investigating the problem to see if it is a generalized glitch.

In the meantime, to help make sure candidates can submit applications smoothly, we repeat the system requirements which are listed on the first page of the online application:

Supported browsers include:
             o  Internet Explorer 7, 8 & 9 (Windows)
             o  Firefox 3.6 & 7 (Mac)
             o  Firefox 3 and 7 (Windows)
             o  Chrome 12 (Windows and Mac)
             o  Safari 4 & 5 (Mac)
             o  Safari 5 (Windows), (Macintosh users - OS X).

While the majority of features will work with other browsers, we can guarantee full compatibility and offer support only for the browsers mentioned above.

If you are using Internet Explorer 6, we strongly recommend upgrading to version 9 as version 6 does not meet our minimum security requirements.

If you are using one of the supported browsers and are experiencing problems, we encourage you to upgrade to the latest version. If you still experience problems after upgrading, please make sure that your browser is set to accept cookies. Also, make sure the following browser settings are enabled:
            o  JavaScript must be enabled.
            o Popup blockers must be disabled.

If your browser has a section for trusted sites, please enter these two URLs:
            o  http://app.applyyourself.com
            o https://app.applyyourself.com

You will need Adobe Reader 6.0 or higher to download, view and print PDF files. While PDF files should work with most other PDF viewers, we can only guarantee full compatibility and support for Adobe Reader 6.0 or higher.

If your email offers a whitelist, please add the following address:  support@hobsons.com

For security reasons, please log out of the online application after each session.

If you have followed the above checklist and are still unable to upload, please send us an email at admissions@jhubc.it and we will help you.

We apologize for any inconvenience. Rest assured you will be able to submit your documents and that your candidacy won't be harmed by any technical difficulties you might experience.

Amina Abdiuahab

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

SAIS Bologna Seminar Series – “how interesting it’s been to be a part of it all”

Yesterday we talked about the courses that will be offered in the upcoming Spring semester. We also mentioned that the new term will feature new speakers and seminar series. Today, we thought we'd ask Kathryn Knowles, who works at the Bologna Institute for Policy Research (BIPR), to give our readers an overview of the opportunities our students will have to learn from some of the world's leading experts. 

Kathryn Knowles 
The seminar series at the Bologna Center is an important complement to the academic program. At least two times a week students, faculty and staff have the opportunity to participate in seminars with leading scholars and practitioners from all over Europe and beyond. Seminars are organized into ten broad thematic categories as varied as the SAIS curriculum, from economics to history to Middle East studies. Different faculty members host each series and students are encouraged to actively participate in the lively question and answer session following each 45-minute presentation.

Last week one of the student research assistants at the Bologna Institute for Policy Research wrote me an e-mail reflecting on his experience working with the Institute to create summary reports of and three-question interviews with guest speakers this fall: “While writing the summary for the Libya roundtable the other night I took a second to email an excerpt to my family -- the part about Prodi -- just because it seemed to capture how interesting it's been to be a part of it all, even just as a notetaker.” Here the student was referring to the presence of Romano Prodi, former president of the European Commission and ex-Italian prime minister, as a member of the audience during a January evening seminar. During the Q&A Professor Prodi shared his own personal experiences dealing with Gaddafi and his opinions about how the international negotiations were handled. It was one of those “SAIS moments” made possible by the richness of the seminar series and the great student interest in learning outside the classroom.

The seminar series continues this spring with some very exciting guests and topics. Two special three-part series begin in February, one with Professor Adrian Lyttleton on “East and West in Global History: The Great Debate” and one with Marco Montanari, Analyst with the European Union Police (EUPOL) Mission to Afghanistan entitled “The Electoral Dimension of International Relations”. These two examples illustrate the uniqueness of the seminar series, students have the possibility to have small-group interactions with both academics and practitioners on a vast range of topics in international relations, from historical analysis to the technical aspects of implementing policy today. In March guest speakers will discuss the Eurozone crisis, Kosovo, nuclear non-proliferation, and China, just to name a few. Also in the line-up this spring is a series of faculty-author book presentations to be held at Feltrinelli International in Bologna, a great way for students to support their professors in their original research.


Amina Abdiuahab

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Beyond final exams, a glimpse of Spring

It's exam period at SAIS Bologna. You can tell by the look on students' faces. As they work their way through finals, there is something on the horizon: the Spring semester. Which for most of our students is their last semester in Bologna before transferring to Washington.

In the Spring, students will be able to choose from more than 30 courses, half of which are offered only in Bologna. Click here to view the course listing.

Some courses are similar from year to year. Prof. John Harper will offer his debating course, always well attended, again this year. Some readers may remember a previous post that highlighted segments of debate in his class last year.

Prof. Erik Jones will teach an advanced research seminar for SAIS Bologna and also for SAIS DC students, who will via video hookup.

Prof. Michael Plummer will return from a stint heading the Development Division of the Trade and Agriculture Directorate of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in Paris. Prof. Plummer will teach a course that always attracts a large number of students: Asian Economic Development.

Each year some things do change. There will be a new course in Global Energy, part of the Energy, Resources and Environment concentration, and another in International Financial Markets.

The Spring semester will feature new speakers and seminars under the auspices of the Bologna Institute for Policy Research (BIPR). More on that later this week. You can have a look at past speakers by viewing BIPR's webpage.

Amina Abdiuahab

Monday, January 23, 2012

Poll: What have you found most challenging about applying?

While many of you are in the home stretch of your application, we thought it would be a good time to take your pulse.

This morning we have posted a poll asking: "What have you found most challenging in applying to SAIS Bologna?"

Here are the possible answers:

- Analytical essay
- Comparing SAIS Bologna to other schools
- Statement of purpose
- Managing the financial commitment
- Dealing with the Admissions team
- Understanding the application process
- Understanding the academic requirements
- Lining up referees to write letters of reference
- English-language requirement

You can choose more than one answer. The poll is entirely anonymous. To vote, simply tick a box or boxes in the upper right-hand corner of this page.

It should take only a few seconds. An excuse to take a time-out from your application.

Nelson Graves

Friday, January 20, 2012


Here's an excuse to take time out from your application to SAIS Bologna and to participate in ... a quiz.

If you speak English during this celebration, you have to pay a penalty in the form of a coin per word spoken.

What is the name of this celebration and what does it signify?

To answer, submit a comment at the bottom of this post.

The winner gets a SAIS Bologna tee shirt.

(See the comments to learn the answer and to see who won the prize.)

Nelson Graves

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

This is not about Groundhog Day

Boris Yeltsin was born on this day. Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini returned to Iran after 15 years in exile on this day. In 1793, France declared war on England and Netherlands on this day.

And, yes, applications to SAIS Bologna from non-U.S. citizens are due this day -- February 1.

We mention this not to put applicants' feet to the fire any more than necessary. Most applicants do not need the reminder.

But this does give me a chance to make one important point: If you are facing the February 1 deadline and you think one or more elements of your application will not make it to us in time, tell us now.

There can be circumstances beyond an applicant's control which prevent a piece of the application puzzle from reaching us on time. Referees -- or authors of letters of recommendation -- can be forgetful. Test scores can take time to trickle in.

We try to be understanding where we can without being unfair to the other applicants. And it is a lot easier to be accommodating if we are briefed on the circumstances.

A couple of related points:
  • We will not be telling applicants when elements of their application reach us. That would pin us down for days. But we will be contacting you after February 1 if something is missing.
  • I understand that there has been discussion among some applicants about how long a CV should be. I wrote about this in November. While I'm a big fan of one-page CVs, we don't require them to be one page. Like a good news story (remember, I was a wire service journalist for 24 years), a CV should be as long as it has to be and no longer. Don't inflate it and don't waste words. And remember, unlike a cold call for a job, you are guaranteed other opportunities in your application and in your interview to flesh out your story. So you needn't say everything in the CV.
Looking past February 1, what do we expect to write about in this journal in coming weeks?

Obviously many applicants will be interested in the interview. Just what goes on during an interview? What is the purpose? How long will it last? How should I dress? Is it better in person or on the phone?

We'll be writing about financial aid -- another important topic. We'll try to spell out clearly the time line for the Admissions Committee's decisions and what is expected of applicants.

So do keep reading this journal if these topics interest you and if you still want to learn more about SAIS Bologna (and SAIS DC). And keep in mind that we've addressed many of these issues in the past year. You can search for topics using the search engine in the upper right-hand corner of the journal. And each post has labels, or tags, capturing the topics.

What have been the five most popular posts since we launched this journal 13 months ago?

1. The Analytical Essay
2. The Statement of Purpose
3. What is in a name?
4. Seeing how you think
5. A video peek at SAIS DC

Nelson Graves

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

What to do with four bare walls? The students will know.

Work in progress
In September, Nelson and I moved office. When we moved in, we had four bare walls. What to do? We called on our students, and they answered. We were flooded with suggestions.

Several recommended we put up a world map to allow students to mark where they were born and to underscore our international footprint. We bought the map -- with the southern hemisphere at the top. The map is now covered with flags showing where our students, who come from 39 different countries, were born.

Others suggested setting aside a section of wall where people could post pictures, postcards and other mementos. So we mounted a magnetic board that is gathering memorabilia and even has a chess problem set for the ambitious.

It was Kirsten Hansen and Paige Crosland who offered perhaps the most innovative suggestion: a mural.

Paint? Mural? What an unusual idea for an office. But we knew our students would come up with an appropriate proposal. The artists were inspired by a photograph that Kirsten took when she visited Bologna as a tourist three years ago. The picture depicted one of Bologna's most distinguishing features: its portici, or arches.

Paige and Kirsten started  the mural -- or better, fresco -- during the first semester.
Paige and Kirsten

We didn't know what to expect. But the end result far exceeds our expectations.

To express our appreciation, we held a brindisi (toast) in their honor last week. Classmates, faculty and staff gathered to congratulate the artists who have transformed our office and confirmed our conviction that SAIS Bologna students have many, many talents and a whole lot to offer the world.

Amina Abdiuahab

Monday, January 16, 2012

Poll: the results of our citizenship survey

Last month we held an online poll suggested by one of our readers, Diego Tiziani.

Diego was interested in other readers' views of citizenship, and more specifically what constitutes citizenship. He said his interest was whetted by his own experiences abroad and by debates in France and Italy over immigration.

Clearly immigration and its effects on politics, economics, societies and international relations are crucial to what is studied at SAIS. Human rights, conflict management, trade, economic policies, internal politics, even monetary policy -- all can be affected by immigration flows.

In a post on December 12, we asked readers this question: What should be required to obtain citizenship of a country?

Although it was not stipulated, readers seemed to understand that the question aimed to focus respondents on the minimum requirements for citizenship.

Here are the results of the survey:

Live a minimum time in the country, prove fluency in the language 30%
Have at least one parent with citizenship in the country 20%
Be born in the country 17%
Live for a minimum period in the country 16%
Be married to a citizen of the country for a minimum period 14%
None of the above 3%

The results are interesting. First, the largest number of respondents felt that it should not be necessary for a citizen to be born in the country or to have "blood ties" to the country. In fact, nearly half of the respondents felt that a crucial criterion to be a citizen should be to live in the country for a minimum period of time, with two thirds of those saying fluency in the country's main language is also necessary.

A third of the respondents felt that a citizen should be born in the country or have at least one parent with citizenship in the country.

Finally, 14% of the respondents said a person should be able to obtain citizenship by being married to a citizen of the country for a minimum period of time -- the way I acquired French citizenship, after nearly three decades of marriage to my wife, a French national.

I'm not surprised by the results of this poll. Many SAIS students expect to move around the world during their lives and to learn different languages. It would be natural for them to favor a relatively flexible standard for citizenship.

I'd like to thank Diego for suggesting this poll. (He has already received a SAIS Bologna tee shirt for his labors.) If anyone else has an idea for a poll, please send it along to admissions@jhubc.it.

Nelson Graves

Friday, January 13, 2012

FAQs: the weeks ahead for applicants to SAIS Bologna

February 1: Candidates who want to study at SAIS Bologna in the 2012-13 academic year and who do not have U.S. citizenship face that looming deadline to apply.

No wonder then that we are receiving many questions about our procedures and what happens after a dossier is submitted. To make things simple we've identified the most common questions, and we think all candidates will benefit from seeing our answers.

Before we dive into the FAQs, we'd like to remind you that on Monday, January 16 at noon Italian time (1100 GMT) we'll hold our final online information session before the application deadline. Please send us a note at admissions@jhubc.it if you'd like to participate in the session.

Q: I have gathered my application documents. Where should I send them?
A: If you are a non-U.S. citizen and you wish to spend your first year at SAIS Bologna, please send any hard copy material to:

Johns Hopkins SAIS Bologna Center 
via Belmeloro, 11
40126 Bologna

U.S. citizens and permanent residents who have chosen BO/DC (U.S. citizen or permanent resident) as their campus choice should mail hard copy materials to the SAIS DC Admissions Office.

Q: I mailed my materials to the SAIS Bologna Admissions Office. When will you acknowledge receipt of my documents? 
A: We are starting to review the application packages. It's difficult for us to email each one of you to confirm your documents have arrived. You'll hear from us if parts of your application are missing.

Q: Am I required to convert my overall undergraduate grade into a GPA?
A: No. You are not expected to provide us with a grade point average of your undergraduate degree if you studied in a country that does not use GPAs. But we do ask that you provide a guide to your university's grading system. Sometimes such a guide is on the back of your transcript. If it is not, you can click on this link to select the country where you studied and a guide to your country's grading system.

Q: The grading system for the country I studied in isn't available on the website you have provided. 
A: In this case, please ask the Registrar's Office of your university to give a guide to their grading system.

Q: I feel the grading scale provided on the website is somewhat incorrect.
A: If you feel your grades aren't being translated properly, please ask your university's Registrar's Office to provide a more comprehensive guide.

Q: Could you give some tips on the statement of purpose?
A: Sure. Please take a look at this post we published some weeks ago. You'll find tips from current students on how they wrote their statement of aims.

Q: Could you give some tips on the analytical essay. 
A: No problem -- here's another post. You'll find some words of advice from a student and the essay she submitted in the past.

Q: Can I go over the word limit in the statement of aims or the analytical essay?
A: Part of the challenge is to convey your thoughts and views while adhering to the word limit. It's best that you stick to the 600-word guideline. If you exceed the limit, cut the essay back.

Q: Should I choose a concentration now? What happens if I change my mind? 
A: In the application form we ask you to indicate a concentration that you'd be interested in pursuing. We also ask you to indicate your second choice. These are not binding. You'll have a chance to change your mind and switch to a different concentration once you get here.

The only concentration that is capped is International Development (IDEV), and it has a separate selection process. Preference is given to students who come from developing countries or have lived or worked in a developing country.

If you are interested in IDEV, you should indicate it as your first concentration choice. It tends to be very popular, and students who indicate it as a second choice are generally not considered for it.

Q: When will I be interviewed?
A: Interviews will be held in February and March. We will announce dates and locations shortly after the deadline.

Q: How will I be interviewed?  
A: You'll be able to interview in person, on the phone or via Skype. There's no advantage or disadvantage in the format.

Q: How is the interview conducted?
A: Last year we published a post in which we asked Prof. Erik Jones to tell us what an applicant should expect of an interview. You can watch the video here.

Q: What happens after the interview?
A: Your dossier will be evaluted by the Admissions Committee. The Committee's decisions, including financial aid packages, will be communicated to candidates in early April.

If you feel there's something we left out, please post a comment or send us an email at admissions@jhubc.it. We'll be happy to address your questions.

Amina Abdiuahab

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Next SAIS Bologna online information session: January 16

You're putting the finishing touches on your application for SAIS Bologna. Or you're scouting around for possible graduate programs.

Whatever your situation, you probably want to learn more about the Bologna Center and you have some questions. That is why we hold regular online information sessions.

What happens to my application after it is submitted? How is it reviewed -- and who does it? When will the interviews be held and just what happens during them?

If you are just getting acquainted with SAIS Bologna, you might have a question about the curriculum, career options or about the city of Bologna.

The next information session -- and our last before the February 1 deadline for applications from non-U.S. citizens -- will be held on Monday, January 16 at noon Italy time (1100 GMT).

If you are interested in participating, please send an email to admissions@jhubc.it. We will then send you the log-in details.

To participate, all you need is an Internet connection and a telephone. The Internet connection gives you access to a platform we use to show video, documents, chat and poll participants. The telephone provides a low-cost audio connection (we provide a list of toll-free numbers).

We look forward to the session and to trying to answer any and all of your questions.

Monday, January 9, 2012

SAIS: a graduate program with a global perspective

Rankings of academic institutions are almost always controversial. How can one measure the quality of teaching or learning with any degree of certainty? How do you set standards that work across the board? How can you ensure a diverse and comprehensive set of judges?

Still, individuals who are considering applying to graduate schools want benchmarks by which to compare programs. The most thoughtful candidates understand that rankings are by definition imperfect tools -- but tools nonetheless.

The U.S. magazine Foreign Policy periodically issues rankings of graduate programs in international relations. It is one of the most widely regarded benchmarks. It has its critics and yet draws attention every time it publishes rankings.

In its January/February issue, Foreign Policy ranks SAIS as the number two master's program in international relations in the world. You can read the results here.

Some of the comments that readers posted to the web version of the article focused on the fact that U.S. institutions dominated these rankings. Not a surprise given that the classifications were the work of faculty at U.S. universities.

We at SAIS are sensitive to these considerations. If SAIS has campuses on three continents -- in North America, Europe and Asia -- it is because it has long recognized that students want to be exposed to different ways of thinking in different parts of the world.

View SAIS locations in a larger map

This is one reason why we consider the SAIS experience so special. Students who spend their first year at SAIS Bologna and their second at SAIS DC reap the benefits of studying on two continents. As our director, Kenneth Keller, puts it, they participate in a debate displaced in time: students confront contrasting viewpoints as they tackle issues on either side of the Atlantic during their two years of study.

So in a way, SAIS should not be considered a purely U.S. institution in these rankings. It would be more accurate to say it is international -- in geography, outlook and philosophy.

Nelson Graves

Friday, January 6, 2012

Photo gallery: the charms of SAIS Bologna's surroundings

One of the joys of attending SAIS Bologna is the chance to explore this medieval city, Italy, Europe and beyond. The surroundings, whether natural or man-made, are steeped in history and a marvel to behold.

Below we post a selection of photographs by this year's students, who like their predecessors are taking advantage of their year to discover the region's charms and to build friendships.

by Jace Han
by Gregory Hadjian
by Jace Han
by Alexis Wright Piet
by Alexis Wright Piet
by Gregory Hadjian
by Jace Han
by Gregory Hadjian
by Gregory Hadjian
by Briana Thompson

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Deadlines, our next information session and social media

First things first in our inaugural post of 2012: Happy New Year to our readers around the world.

We hope that most of you will continue to follow this journal and send us comments and suggestions -- or even contributions -- as the year unfolds. We are in our second year of this journal, but we are all ears when it comes to tips and recommendations. I was a journalist for nearly three decades: my skin is pretty thick.


Many of our readers are U.S. citizens who want to start their SAIS studies in Bologna. They are in the final throes of applying as their deadline is January 7.

Non-U.S. citizens who want to start in Bologna face a February 1 deadline. We devoted a post to some of the finer points of our somewhat arcane process last month.

U.S. citizens who have dual nationality have the choice of having their applications handled by SAIS Bologna or SAIS DC. If you are in this situation and you have questions, you can fire them off to admissions@jhubc.it.


Our next information session, and the last one before the February 1 deadline for applications, is set for Monday, January 16 at noon Italy time (1100 GMT). We expect it will last about 45 minutes.

These sessions give applicants and prospective candidates a chance to learn more about SAIS Bologna and ask questions. We expect many candidates will have finished their applications by then or be in the final stages of doing so. Still, you might have questions about what happens after February 1: the interview, the admissions process and timeline, financial aid.

If you are interested in participating in this session, please send an email to admissions@jhubc.it, and we will send you the details for logging in.


Many of you are followers of our journal or receive it by email. Last month we started using Twitter, where you can find us @SAISBolognaBlog. We push out links to our posts on Twitter. And of course we are on Facebook at Johns Hopkins SAIS Admissions.

Nelson Graves