Political Violence @ a Glance

A few months ago we made a plug for another blog.  That post didn’t have much traction, so we’re doing another plug!

Political Violence @ a Glance is an award winning blog that was co-founded by our very own Dr. Erica Chenoweth.  Dr. Chenoweth is a professor here at Korbel, and she’s pretty darn impressive.  Her blog features analysis on some of today’s most pressing political violence issues around the world.  For example, a few of the blog’s more recent posts touch on the refugee crisis.  The blog is very well written and features a great mix of guest bloggers, some of whom are also Korbel professors.

Give it a read!

Scholarships! Scholarships! Scholarships!

A while back we blogged about how there are thousands of scholarship opportunities out there, and that the key to finding / getting them is to get specific.  Well, here we are with some super specific scholarship opportunities.

The following link has a lengthy list of scholarships available to African women from Africa and other developing countries.  Some of the scholarships listed are specific to one country or school, but not all of them – check ’em out!

2016 List of Scholarships for African women and Developing Countries, SHARE!

The Secret to Checking your Online Application Status

Dear Korbel Admissions Office,

Have you received my transcript(s) and / or my GRE scores? I sent them two weeks ago.


Applicant X


Lately the Admissions Office inbox has been flooded with emails similar (or identical) to the one above. Don’t worry, if you sent something like this to us, it’s cool. We’ll still take a look at your application. However, here are a few things you should keep in mind before asking us if we’ve received your materials:

  1. The lifespan of a transcript and of test scores is rather lengthy and there are several steps throughout the process: requesting from the undergraduate institution or testing facility, processing on that end, going through the mail to arrive to Denver, arriving on campus to the Office of Graduate Studies, processing of materials on this end, and then marking as “complete” in the online application.
  2. The Office of Graduate Studies processes all application materials…for ALL graduate applicants. This means they are processing application materials for anyone applying to any of the graduate programs on campus. If you’re interested in counting those programs, here’s a list: http://www.du.edu/learn/graduates/degreeprograms/index.html. Considering how many applications come through, let’s be patient with the processing of application materials.
  3. The priority deadline for Korbel graduate applicants was on January 15th, which means that there were MILLIONS (that’s dramatic – realistically it’s probably more like hundreds) of transcripts, test scores and letters of recommendation, that arrived right before and right after the deadline. There’s a bit of catch up being played.
  4. The status that you can see on your online application is the same status that we can see on our end. This is because the Office of Admissions doesn’t process the application materials. If you are starting to wonder where your requested transcript or test scores are, the Office of Graduate Studies is who you want to reach out to.

The moral of this blog post is to remember that the secret to checking your online application status is to remember to be patient.

While you’re being patient, check out these sneak peek photos of our new building! Those views… those views…

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When You Call the Admissions Office…

Somehow we forgot to introduce you to our “new” Associate Director of Graduate Admission, Kieffer Williams.  This is not because we do not love Kieffer, rather quite the opposite.  So let’s think of it as a “we saved the best for last” situation.

Everyone, I introduce you to Kieffer!

Kieffer blog post


My name is Kieffer Williams and I am the Associate Director of Graduate Admission at Korbel. Most important thing to know about me? I’m not a male. I know, shocking! Believe me you are not the first, nor the last to think I’m a male and write me an email starting with “Dear Mr. Williams….” I realize the name is misleading (I am after all named after my great-grandfather) so don’t worry if you have sent me one of those “Mr. Williams” emails I won’t hold it against you ;)

I am a Colorado native, which means I’m kind of a big deal. All of us natives have been diluted by all the transplants who have moved to town so we’re a rare animal to find (kind of like a unicorn). I received a BA in Psychology from DU and an MA in International Relations while living in Europe. Which means…. I get it! I get exactly where you are. I know how exciting (and terrifying) it is to be making this major life-changing decision to go to graduate school and to study international studies. I jumped off that cliff too and believe me, it was worth it!

I joined the Korbel admission office this past fall and prior to that I worked in independent school admission for the past six years. I am proud to say the Korbel admission office is definitely the friendliest and funnest (yes, I said, funnest) team you will meet in your graduate school admission encounters. We have an amazing team and if you come visit, which I highly recommend you do, I’d love to introduce you to them and show you around our amazing school!

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Denver Rules!

Why would you want to come to school in Denver?  It’s plain and simple, folks.  Denver rules.

While that is 100% true, in all seriousness, the city of Denver is a huge international relations hub.  Combine that with the Rocky Mountain setting, and you have a uniquely desirable location for graduate school and professional life.  The Josef Korbel School offers a very distinct approach to international relations that is directly tied to our strategic location.

Need more convincing?  Here are 5 Reasons why Denver is a Top International Hub.

  1. The Posner Center is home to over 60 development orientated organizations.  As a leader within the international development field, the Posner Center builds a community of innovators who create lasting solutions to global poverty.  Did we mention that the Posner Center is located less than eight miles from campus in downtown Denver and that many of the organizations are led by Korbel alumni?
  2. The Denver area has more than 200 organizations dedicated to international development.  Many Korbel students find employment after graduation in this sector.  And as a result, the internship opportunities for our graduate students are endless.
  3. The Josef Korbel School is the only school dedicated to the study of international relations in the Rocky Mountain area.  That means that our students are highly sought after in the job market and have a variety of employment and internship opportunities to choose from.
  4. The Korbel student body is highly collaborative and international.  Our students come from all over the world and have various academic and professional backgrounds.  The focus at Korbel is less on competition, and more on making the world a better place.  With classes offered during the day, our program is ideal for students who want a community and not just a commuter experience.
  5. We get it, the world does not revolve around Denver. This is why students don’t just study in Denver.  Korbel students have the opportunity to study abroad in either D.C. or Geneva, Switzerland.  Both study abroad programs give students the chance to immerse themselves into the international relations community through internships.  Outside of these programs, many of our students pursue internships abroad in Guatemala, China, Kenya, Brussels and many more locations around the world .

P.S. I forgot to mention…

6. Our new building (opening in March 2016), which will provide state-of-the-art classrooms, a simulation room, community meeting spaces, and a café for all your caffeine needs. And oh man, wait till you see the views of the mountains from the top floor!

The Life of an Official Transcript (and / or The Life of Official Test Scores, Letters of Recommendation, etc.)

Did you request for your undergraduate transcript(s) to be sent to us?  Did you do it yesterday?  Is it still not showing up on your online application?  OMG – something went wrong!  Kidding.  There is nothing to worry about.  I’m here to explain to you the life of an official transcript.  This is going to be like Schoolhouse Rock’s “I’m Just a Bill,” only no song included and it is in written format.  Side note: this timeline is also applicable to official test scores, letters of recommendation and other application materials.

Day 1: When you submit the transcript request to your undergraduate school, it will likely take them at minimum three to five business days to process the request on their end.

Day 3-5: Once the transcript has been mailed, it will take another three to five business days for it to arrive onto campus.  Also noteworthy, mail is often delivered to the incorrect office on campus.  Why?  No clue.  But it happens.  So, let’s add in one more business day just for good measure.

mail 1Exhibit A: Yesterday’s mail included a few transcripts and test scores, but alas, they were delivered to the wrong office.

Day 6-10: After the transcript has arrived into the correct hands, it is not immediately reflected into an applicant’s online application.  The transcript must be processed.  This adds another two or three days to the process.

Day 8-13: Finally, the transcript is processed and is reflected in your online application!  Yay!

Business days vs. weekends.  Business days mean Monday through Friday.  Mail is not delivered on Sundays, nor is the University open on weekends.  So, when you’re doing your day-calculations to see when your transcript will show up in your online application, don’t count weekends.

Also, Vacation.  Everyone loves vacation, even the University of Denver.  In fact, we love it so much that we give our students a five week break from Thanksgiving through the New Year!  This means that when we return from vacation at the start of January, there is always a large pile of transcripts (and other fun application materials) awaiting to be sorted and processed.  Same thing goes for undergraduate institutions.  They also love vacation, and they also probably have a large stack of transcript requests awaiting to be processed after break.

mail 2Exhibit B: This is mail from Tuesday morning.  Just Tuesday morning.  There’s also mail that arrives in the afternoon, let alone all the mail that arrived over winter break.  Ooofta.

So, when you are planning to apply for graduate school make sure you allot enough time for transcript requests (and test scores, letters of recommendation, etc.) to be completed.  Remember to take the holidays into account.  If you requested your transcript to be sent any time after December 15th, chances are that your transcript will not be sent to us until the start of the New Year.  We know that applying to graduate school is a lengthy, stressful and at times terrifying process, but please be patient – your transcript will arrive!

Oh, also… If your transcript/test scores/recommendations, etc. are on their way or still being processed at the time of the application deadline, your application WILL NOT be penalized. Our admissions committee will review your application file as soon as it is complete. And just so you can sleep well at night- our office will send you a confirmation email once all your materials are received and your application is completed.

Questions?  Comments?  Concerns?  Contact the Korbel admissions office at korbeladm@du.edu.

What is the quarter system?

Happy start of winter quarter classes! Ah yes, the quarter system, the love hate relationship with our academic calendar. As I write this, everyone is madly in love with our quarter system. After all, they have all been on break since the week of Thanksgiving, so while others were stressed about finals week last month, we were four weeks into getting the full use of our ski pass. Students tend to hate the quarter system in early May when they still have a few weeks left in the spring quarter.

The University of Denver’s academic calendar looks like this. But the overview goes like this, 10 week classes vs. 16 week classes. Things move quickly. The advantage of the quarter system is that you cover more topics in a year because you take classes three times per year. The disadvantage is that things move very quickly–like you’re working on your midterm in early October quickly.

You: Wait, you said three times per year? Quarter suggests four, why is it called a quarter system?

Me: Oh, yes, my fault, let me explain.

We offer classes four times per year: fall, winter, spring and summer. Since the Josef Korbel School has a required internship, most of our students take the summer off to pursue an internship somewhere off campus or out of the country. Thus, I often think about three quarters, but we do have summer classes in the event you want to take them.

Brad Miller

Director of Admissions