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The Master’s Program in Middle Eastern Studies at the Graduate Center, CUNY, was established in Fall 2008. The first student graduated in 2011 and by June 2016 there were 55 alumni.
Of these graduates, 20 percent are in PhD programs or law schools.
Of the rest, 30 percent are working in higher education; 17 percent are employed at NGOs; 30 percent in other jobs; and the remaining 21 percent are recent graduates at the start of their job search.
To date, our former students have been admitted to

  • Columbia University, Ph.D in History
  • Fordham University, Ph.D in History
  • The Graduate Center, CUNY in the Ph.D. in English, Ethnomusicology and Political Science
  • New York University, Ed.D. Program in Higher and Postsecondary Education
  • New York University, Ph.D. in Anthropology, History and Middle Eastern Studies, and Judaic Studies
  • Rutgers School of Law-Newark
  • Temple University, Beasley School of Law
  • University of Texas, Austin, Ph.D. Middle Eastern Studies (Hebrew)
The majority of the graduates have entered the workplace or continued employment in their jobs. These include university administration, library science, non-profits for human rights, as well as international affairs and teaching.
Suad Mohamed was our first alumna. She has continued to teach Arabic, but her degree in Middle Eastern Studies has allowed her to teach undergraduate and even graduate courses that include media content at the University of Virginia. And of course, the MA warrants a higher remuneration.

Arthur B. Starr is now Program Coordinator at The Hagop Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies at New York University.

Avishan Bodjnoud was enrolled in the MA-MES while she worked full-time at the UN as an IT professional. Less than year after her graduation (May 2013), she found a more challenging job thanks for the MA. She is now a Research Officer for the Policy and Best Practices section of Department of Peacekeeping Operations.

Bret Nelson started the program with a MA in Political Science. His expertise on the Middle East helped him find a job at Freedom House.

Leeam Azulay Yagev moved to Jerusalem to work for the renowned NGO, Norwegian Refugee Council. After being employed by Human Rights Now for several years in the grants office, Leeam is happy to be doing direct advocacy in her new post.  

Jenna Daley graduated in June 2014. She will be working as an English teacher and tutor with AMIDEAST in Rabat, Morocco starting in October 2014. She hopes to be fluent in Arabic and French when she returns stateside
Ashley Parent works for Committee to Protect Journalists as the Communications Associate, she is thrilled that her Arabic courses are very useful when she is sending news blasts in Arabic.

Justin Tessier completed his MA-MES program in Spring 2016. When he was employed by the Alumni Relations Office, American University of Beirut in NYC, he left his job at the Post Office. He now envisages a career in development.

Many students do capstone projects that engage with their studies and their work.

Dylan Anderson started a blog that discusses Orientalism through the Star Wars film franchise at

Marwa Janini's capstone on Palestinians in Latin America has been featured in Jadaliyya. Click here to read it.

Rhoda Ismail runs the website that focuses on Arab related events in New York City.

Anna Taylor's capstone project was a magazine on Iranian women. Click here to view it.