Students who choose the practice option may choose to complete a professional project that immerses the student in the professional world. There are two pathways to this capstone. The first is organized as a team working on an assignment for a client
organization or a simulation exercise. The team must submit a set of outputs required by the client or simulation, such as a report, a film, a set of briefing papers, or other professional outputs. The second is an independent project conducted
by a student that is embedded in a professional or technical skill course, such as Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) or Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Two project reports must be submitted. The project must meet the quality and timeliness standards
of a professional consultancy and contain analytical and creative material that reflects mastery of subject matter, appropriate methodology, technical and professional tools, and critical thinking skills.
Students choosing this option must take a series of two capstone classes. There are a number of classes that offer a pathway for preparing the practice capstone.
- Practice capstone 1: Several courses provide appropriate preparation for undertaking the selected project and must be approved by the practice supervisor. The options include Project Cycle Management, Studio, Policy Analysis, or a designated subject
content analysis course in which the project is embedded.
- Practice capstone 2: There are several classes that support the implementation of the professional project. These include Client Project Implementation, Studio, or a designated subject content analysis course in which the project is embedded.
Sample Practicum Projects
Past projects have included the following:
- Developing material for refugee and immigrant schoolchildren and conducting staff trainings for the International Rescue Committee
- A comparative analysis paper for Human Rights Watch on amnesties granted in Cambodia, Chile, and Mozambique
- Producing policy and analysis papers on universal children's "social security" for UNICEF, equitable aid distribution to fragile states for UNICEF, and human trafficking outreach for the International Rescue Committee
- Writing a grant proposal to construct and fund a health center in Kenya for the East African Center for the Empowerment of Women and Children
- Making an advocacy film on international HIV and AIDS activists for the ATHENA Women's Network
Practicum teams are required to submit their deliverable to their client and make a final presentation of their work at the end of the semester.
Detailed rules for applying to and professional conduct for practicums can be found in the Practice Guidelines.