Master of Arts in Sustainable International Development

Second-Year Practicum Track

Hammad Anwar doing his practicum with Save the Children
Hammad Anwar, MA SID'19, completed his practicum with Save the Children in Washington, DC. He worked as a Monitoring & Evaluation intern on a youth empowerment program called Skills to Succeed (S2S), in the Department of Hunger and Livelihood.
Zyanya Aguilar-Nelson doing her practicum at a school in Tanzania
Zyanya Aguilar-Nelson, MA SID'19, worked at SEGA Girls Secondary School in Morogoro, Tanzania, helping the communications team prepare for the new academic year, supporting the counseling department on community outreach initiatives, and working with the Msichana wa Kisasa (Modern Girl) program.
Millie Knopp doing her practicum
Millie Knopp, MA SID'18, completed her practicum with the Women’s Global Network for Reproductive Rights in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
Oudo Sanogo doing his practicum with United Planet
Oudou Sanogo, MA SID'18, served as International Programs Coordinator with United Planet in Boston. He worked on international service programs for volunteers. His projects focused on children and education, global health and environmental sustainability.
Anita Yousuf doing her practicum in Gilgit, Pakistan
Anita Yousuf, MA SID'18, served as a trainee researcher with the Economic Transformation Initiative (ETI) in Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan in its gender and poverty section and monitoring and evaluation section, where she collected data, developed case studies, conducted cost-benefit analyses and more.
Gail Carter doing her practicum with Oxfam
Gail Carter, MA SID'18, interned with Oxfam America’s Private Sector Department in Boston, where she analyzed Oxfam’s investor engagement efforts and had the chance to testify at the Massachusetts State House.
Shiqi Shen doing her practicum with Badi Foundation in Beijing
Shiqi Shen, MA SID'18, worked at the Badi Foundation in Beijing, where she assisted with capacity building. "We're exploring how moral and spiritual factors can be explicitly and meaningfully incorporated into development programs."
Enet Mukurazita doing her practicum
Enet Mukurazita, MA SID'19, was a coordinator for Co-op Power Community Energy Cooperative in Boston Metro East (BME), which aims to expand access to clean energy. She worked to develop BME's board for long-term sustainability.

Students in the Practicum Track spend their second year completing a field-based practicum for a minimum of six months. Students in this track identify and obtain their own practicum placements at development organizations worldwide, with the assistance of the SID program and the Heller Career Development Center. They receive academic credit for their six-month practicum assignment with a development organization such as a UN agency, an international NGO, or a local organization.

The practicum may be carried out in the U.S. or internationally. Practicum positions often include conducting research, formulating policies, managing projects, and conducting fundraising or advocacy campaigns, among many other assignments. Individual Terms of Reference are designed to ensure that students acquire the necessary competencies to advance their careers in the development sector.

Through the practicum experience, each student focuses on a development issue or problem. 

  • The practicum experience is designed to nurture new ideas, deepen field experience and professional growth, and is suited to a student’s background, level of experience, and career path.
  • Past practicum organizations have included major global organizations such as the United Nations Development Programme, World Health Organization, and the World Bank; international organizations such as Oxfam, Save the Children, International Rescue Committee, CARE, and the Aga Khan Foundation; human rights and policy advocacy organizations; and national and local governments and NGOs throughout the developing world.
  • The second-year practicum makes the Master of Arts SID degree program more affordable because there are no course tuition fees during the off-campus year. Instead, students pay the minimum enrollment fee for their two semesters, a small Heller program fee, and their health insurance fees.

Students are required to write a consultant's report, policy brief, or research paper based on their work with the practicum organization. The program culminates with a presentation of the student’s work at a Capstone event in May of the students’ second year. Students who complete all credit requirements, the required master’s paper, and their Capstone presentation graduate in May of their second year.  

Total credits: 56

  • 18 required credits
  • 14 elective credits
  • 24 practicum credits