• Learn from a leader and innovator in the field, training conflict managers and peace-builders for more than 25 years.
  • Stay in your job while earning your degree.
  • Get on-the-ground training in post-conflict transition during two weeks across different locations in South Africa.
  • Interact with peacebuilding specialists from around the world at the CONTACT Summer Peacebuilding Program
  • Expand your professional network with peacebuilding experts outside of SIT through an innovative partnership with two leading peace and justice organizations in the US

The world needs peace and justice advocates more than ever. Get the skills you need to design and lead interventions that address the causes and consequences of complex and multi-layered conflicts and that can help build sustained peace.

You’ll learn from peacebuilding experts in government, nongovernmental, and international organizations both in the United States and abroad. You’ll examine and practice strategies for conflict transformation at interpersonal, intercommunal, national, and international levels.

With the training you’ll receive through this program, you’ll be prepared to introduce interventions that address the root causes of conflict, such as poverty, chronic inter-communal violence, non-representative political systems, gender inequality, and cultures of intolerance. You’ll be ready to work in NGOs, development initiatives, humanitarian aid, educational settings, youth programs, inter-group relations efforts, human rights organizations, and elsewhere.

On-the-Ground Training in South Africa

Spend two weeks witnessing a post-conflict transition in action in three South African cities: Johannesburg, Durbin, and Cape Town.

Excursion highlights include:

  • The Apartheid Museum
  • The Nelson Mandela Foundation
  • ACCORD, the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes
  • Desmond Tutu’s and Nelson Mandela’s houses on Soweto’s Vilakazi Street
  • Robben Island, a UNESCO World Heritage site, where Nelson Mandela and other African National Congress (ANC) leaders were imprisoned
  • Gandhi’s house to learn about his philosophy of nonviolence — visit will include a conversation with his granddaughter
  • Research institutes in Durbin examining issues of peace and justice in post-apartheid South Africa
  • The Luthuli Museum to learn about Inkosi Albert John Luthuli, a South African teacher, activist, Nobel Peace Prize winner, and former president of the ANC
  • Weekend excursion into the bush


With SIT’s experiential curriculum, you’ll learn how to put theory into practice. In addition to core courses, a broad range of elective choices let you focus on courses that will help you meet your career goals.

Year One: First Term, Two-Week Residency Vermont; Washington, DC (optional); and Online

  • CONTACT Summer Program (Peacebuilding 1 & 2) – 2–3 credits (One credit takes place in DC and is optional.)
  • Practitioner Inquiry – 3 credits

Year One: Second Term, Online

  • Theory and Practice of Peacebuilding, Conflict Transformation, and Justice Promotion – 3 credits
  • Negotiation, Mediation, and Dialogue – 3 credits

Year One: Third Term, Online

  • Policy Advocacy Concepts – 1 credit
  • Civil Resistance – 2 credits
  • Leadership and Change – 3 credits

Year Two: Fourth Term, Two-Week Residency in South Africa and Online

  • CONTACT Mid-Year Field Seminar – 2 credits
  • Program Monitoring and Evaluation: Concepts – 1 credit
  • Design Monitoring and Evaluation in Fragile Environments – 1 credit

Year Two: Fifth Term, Online

  • Strategic Peacebuilding – 3 credits
  • Special Topics in Conflict Transformation, Peacebuilding, and Justice Promotion – 2 credits
  • From Grant Writing to Policy Briefs: Essential Skills in Peace and Justice Promotion – 1 credit

Year Two: Sixth Term, Online

  • Reflective Practice – 3 credits
  • Capstone Project – 3 credits

Alumni Careers

Students in this program go on to work in the field in a variety of areas including study abroad offices, NGOs, nonprofits, and government agencies. Find out some of the career paths that may be open to you.

The demand for well-trained conflict transformation practitioners has never been greater. Career opportunities in the field are numerous, especially for conflict transformation practitioners who can become pioneers in expanding the scope of conflict transformation practices that society can recognize and value.

Graduates go on to work for NGOs, education institutions, the media, the private sector, the government, international organizations, and in other professional venues.

Alumni develop their own distinct and diverse paths—paths that may be collectively described as integrated peacebuilding, a wide spectrum of sustained group-based processes, which seek to bring members of divided groups and communities together to meet their shared needs and purposes that can transcend the underlying reasons for their divisions. This work may include:

  • Leading youth camps
  • Organizing community-based arts and sports events
  • Developing inclusive educational curricula
  • Teaching languages through means that promote intercultural harmony
  • Working as human rights and gender sensitivity advocates and defenders of marginalized people
  • Supporting political and social change campaigns
  • Working in government agencies and international organizations with conflict awareness
  • Working as socially responsible media professionals
  • Providing humanitarian assistance to refugees, immigrants, and internally displaced persons
  • Providing disaster relief
  • Creating socially and environmentally responsible business practices
  • Advocating community-based inclusive health services
  • Creating religious services that promote social harmony
  • Using monitoring and evaluation skills to facilitate social change initiatives

Past positions held by alumni of this program include:

  • Executive Director, Interfaith Center for Peace and Justice, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
  • Trainer, Somali Refugee Association, Silver Spring, MD
  • Founder, Andi Leadership Institute for Young Women, Washington, DC
  • Community Organizer, Vermont Interfaith Action Group, Vermont
  • International Human Resources Systems Manager, Nonviolent Peace Force, San Francisco, CA
  • Libya representative, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), Washington, DC and Libya
  • Consultant, Refugee Youth Program Director and Teambuilding, Burlington, VT
  • CEO/Director, Red Kite Project, Philadelphia, PA
  • Director of Programming, Encounter Program, Boston, MA, Israel, and Palestine
  • Youth Adjustment Counselor, RefugeeOne, Chicago, IL
  • Community Educator, Silicon Valley Faces, San Jose, CA
  • Education Consultant, UN International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), Uganda
  • Political Specialist, National Reconciliation & Humanitarian Mine Action, Rangoon, Burma
  • Program Director, Global Kids, Washington, DC
  • Community Organizer, NARAL Pro-Choice Washington, Washington, DC
  • Program Manager, British Council, Azerbaijan
  • Health Technical Specialist, Save the Children International, Liberia
  • Assistant Director, RAMP Youth Services, Putney, VT
  • Founder & President, Daya Center for Peace, Hyderabad, India
  • Director, Prison Theater Program, SingSing, New York
  • Outreach & Dialog Facilitation Associate, Unity Productions Foundation, California and Washington, DC
  • Associate Director for Diversity Services, Suffolk University, Boston, MA
  • Program Officer, Hunt Alternatives Fund, Sudan
  • Peace Journalist, TRANSCEND Media Services, Springfield, MA

Graduates of the CONTACT program include:

  • Maliha Hassan, deputy attorney general of Afghanistan
  • Dishani Jayaweera, director of the Center for Peacebuilding and Reconciliation in Sri Lanka
  • Vahidin Omanovic, founder and director of the Center for Peacebuilding in Bosnia
  • Joseph Sebarenzi, former Rwandan Parliamentarian, U.S. Department of Treasury official, and author of God Sleeps in Rwanda


Direct Costs

Tuition and Fees

Year 1 Tuition: $20,295

Year 1 Fees: $1,455

Year 2 Tuition: $20,295

Year 2 Fees: $1,199

MA degree total tuition and fees (all terms combined): $43,244

Year 1 On-Campus Room and Board: $768

Year 2 Estimated On-Campus Room and Board: $475

Optional Washington, DC, Credit

Tuition: $305

Room and Board: $868

Indirect Costs

SIT estimates the costs to students for books, personal expenses, transportation. Individual expenses may vary.

Year 1 Books: $1,200

Year 1 Personal Expenses: $1,500

Year 1 Transportation Costs: $500

Year 2 Books: $1,200

Year 2 Personal Expenses: $1,500

Year 2 Transportation Costs: $1,020 (plus $195 for passport, if student doesn’t already have valid one)

Optional Washington, DC, Credit

Personal Expenses: $200

Transportation Costs: $250

Additional Costs

Estimated Student Loan Fees:

Year 1: $225

Year 2: $225

Optional DC Credit: $20

Estimated fees are based on the average amount borrowed by SIT Graduate Institute students. See details on student loan options.


Direct costs and on-campus room and board are billed by SIT Graduate Institute. Indirect, off-campus housing costs, transportation expenses, and additional costs are not billed by SIT, but represent educational expenses associated with being an enrolled student.

Program taught in:
Last updated September 30, 2018
This course is Online & Campus Combined
Start Date
Sept. 2019
2 years
43,244 USD
MA degree total tuition and fees (all terms combined)
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Sept. 2019
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