Perhaps you have attended virtual information sessions and you heard our Seeples (spoiler alert of the content of this blog!)  talk in acronyms about concentrations, specializations, offices, etc. Or, maybe you just began to read and enjoy our blogs (if so, welcome!). Either way, if you left confused with all the acronyms, sounds about right! I remember when I began working at SIPA and I heard so many different abbreviations I did not know what any of them meant. So, since I have been in your shoes – I have created the ultimate guide to SIPA Lingo.


Let’s start with the obvious one from above – “Seeple

Noun (see-PULL): A person who attends SIPA.

Used in a sentence: “I loved meeting Seeples during my visit to SIPA!

First, all the programs that fall under SIPA:

  • EMPA: Executive Masters of Public Affairs
  • MIA: Masters of International Affairs
  • MPA: Masters of Public Administration
  • MPA-DP: Masters of Public Administration in Development Practice
  • MPA-ESP: Masters of Public Administration in Environmental Science and Policy
  • PEPM: Masters of Public Administration Program in Economic Policy and Management
  • SDEV: PhD in Sustainable Development

Now, let’s move to our concentrations and specialization:

MIA/MPA Concentrations:

  • EPD: Economic and Political Development
  • EE: Energy and Environment
  • HRHP: Human Rights and Humanitarian Policy
  • IFEP: International Finance and Economic Policy
  • ISP: International Security Policy
  • USP: Urban and Social Policy

MIA/MPA Specializations: 

  • DAQA: Data Analytics and Quantitative Analysis
  • GPP: Gender and Public Policy
  • ICR: International Conflict Resolution
  • IO: International Organization and UN Studies
  • MGT: Management
  • TMaC: Technology, Media, and Communications

Offices that you’ll be using during your time here:

  • AFA: Admissions and Financial Aid
  • CAC: Career Advancement Center
  • CUIT: Columbia University Information Technology
  • CXR: Office of Communications and External Relations
  • ISSO: International Students and Scholars Office
  • OAA: Office of Academic Affairs
  • OAD: Office of Alumni and Development
  • OSA: Office of Student Affairs

Centers you may be involved with:

  • CDEP: Center for Development Economics and Policy
  • CEEP: Center for Environmental Economics and Policy
  • CGEG: Center for Global Economic Governance
  • CFEP: Center on Global Energy Policy
  • SIWPS: Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies

Voilà! Your very basic, but ultimate guide, for understanding your SIPA Lingo. Go forth and abbreviate everything you can!