By: Karl Hendler
In a recent post on the SIPA website, Dean Merit E. Janow announced a collection of new course offerings for the Fall 2019 semester, meant to expand the current SIPA curriculum in response to changing student needs. In the announcement, Dean Janow emphasized, “These new courses are intended to better utilize the varied experiences of incoming SIPA students and better prepare students for the dynamic professional environments they will enter upon graduation.”
A partial list of the upcoming courses is below, subject to change:
SIPA U83472: WhatsApp Diplomacy (3.0 pts): Students will learn the art and science of coordinating and negotiating over WhatsApp, including passive-aggressive reminders to finish work in group projects; tentative and vague planning for social outings (as well as techniques for flaking on such plans beyond “lol sorry can’t make it”); and ad-hoc group chats for complaining about professors.
INAF U23523: Bespoke Suit Fitting for Private Sector Consulting (3.0 pts): Restricted to second-year students, this class will meet weekly in either the 5th Avenue or Soho shopping districts. Students will learn the process of being fitted for and purchasing custom business wear, an essential requirement for the lucrative private sector careers prized at this public policy school. Students also have the option to add a soon-to-be-announced 1.5 credit class on designing and ordering high-end embossed business cards.
INAF U58785: Internship Embellishment (3.0 pts): Over the summer you personally briefed the Secretary General of the UN, interviewed the president of Argentina, and prepared quarterly reports for Elon Musk. These are just a few of the embellishments students will be able to pull off while discussing their recent internships with classmates and potential employers after attending this course. Though most SIPA students have been resigned to clerical work in exchange for academic credit, no task is too menial for this course to transform into supposedly substantive contributions to public policy.
SIPA U23543: Professional Stress Inflation (3.0 pts): Upon completion of this course, students will gain the skills necessary to one-up each other in complaining about midterms, final papers, and their internship/job searches. Techniques for indulging in self-fulfilling stress culture will include passing off Facebook and Instagram scrolling as marathon study sessions, blaming a lack of sleep on professors having unrealistic workload expectations and not Netflix binging, and coming to the communal agreement that “millennial burnout” is actually a thing and not the dramatization of simply growing up.
REGN U23364: “The Iraq War Was a Mistake” and Other Unoriginal Ideas You Have (3.0 pts): Students will learn the essentials of making unhelpful and superfluous contributions to class discussions by passing off obvious points as new and profound ideas. Examples (in addition to the course title, covered in week 1) include “Trump is harming America on the world stage”; “institutions are important”; and “cybersecurity is revolutionizing war, government, and business.” Bonus points will be granted to male students who successfully repackage female students’ contributions as their own but with added self-assuredness.
SIPA U68321: Planning and Executing Capstone Travel (3.0 pts): Covering techniques for maximizing the appearance of work that could have been done in a library or over a skype call, this course will also expose students to preferred methods of posting beach and luxury hotel photos to Instagram, with occasional shots of brief and unproductive meetings with capstone clients – which for some reason needed to be done in person and conveniently required a weeklong trip to an exotic location – so as to keep up the appearance that these are “work trips.”
The final list of new courses will be published at the end of April. Dean Janow is looking forward to input from students and faculty in order to ensure these additions to the curriculum best reflect and improve upon SIPA students’ experiences.