8 May 2019
The Centre for for international Studies and Diplomacy celebrated the first graduates sponsored by the FCO from the MA Global Diplomacy programme on Wednesday 1 May. The event was attended by SOAS Director Baroness Valerie Amos, FCO Diplomatic Academy Director John Benjamin.
Valerie Amos said: "It was a pleasure to meet some of the students who have completed the CISD Global Diplomacy Programme. Working and studying is not easy. This programme helps our students to understand the importance of looking at issues from many perspectives when engaged in diplomacy. My thanks to Jon Benjamin, Director FCO Diplomatic Academy, SOAS's Centre for International Studies & Diplomacy, and the University of London for making this programme a reality. And to the students, all best wishes in your future endeavors."
Echoing the importance of a diverse student body, and perspectives within the Global Diplomacy programme, online student Jonathan Bacon said: "My online tutor groups included people from around the world, working in a variety of fields. The diverse range of views and perspectives enhanced my learning experience".
Speaking about her experience as an online student, Joelene Josse said: “The SOAS online experience provided a rich and motivating learning platform: bringing together students from varied backgrounds, to facilitate engaging, thought provoking and often divergent exchanges on issues of global diplomacy and beyond. The quality of academic leadership has been consistently excellent across modules and I would like to thank the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy professors for their high quality teaching and for their endless encouragement and support.”
While Lisa Whanstall, another student from the FCO Diplomatic Academy said: "My SOAS MA has expanded my intellectual horizons and deepened my geographical expertise. It has made me an agile and deploy able team member and a champion for further learning."
FCO Diplomatic Academy Director John Benjamin, a former colleague of Baroness Amos, said: "This is the first post-graduate level programme the FCO Diplomatic Academy has run, and we are grateful to SOAS for delivering a programme of such excellence. This is a key element of developing future leaders of HM Diplomatic Service. I am delighted to congratulate our first graduates, and note that we have a healthy pipeline of students in the programme."
Dr J Simon Rofe, Programme Director for Global Diplomacy said: "It was a great pleasure to share the experiences of our first FCO graduates from our partnership with the Diplomatic Academy as they complete their programme; and to learn about how they will apply their learning to the work of the FCO in their future careers."
CISD Director Dr Dan Plesch said: "We're extremely proud the Foreign & Commonwealth Office's Diplomatic Academy has chosen to train the next generation of British foreign policy leaders with us here at SOAS. Congratulations to the students on their hard work and achievements so far, and best of luck for the future."