The Master's Program in Coexistence and Conflict (COEX) is designed for early and mid-career professionals who work or wish to work in peacebuilding within governments, international agencies or non-government organizations. The program also prepares graduates for careers in security and diplomacy, aid and development, human rights, democracy work, education, civil society and community development. Students are trained in theoretical and practical issues of coexistence and conflict resolution in divided societies.
Students will gain professional skills to design and implement successful interventions that enable groups, nations and regions to embrace peaceful coexistence and use those skills in their work in both government and non-government settings.
Through three pillars, the COEX program curriculum aims at strengthening students’ competencies:
To evaluate conflicts and design strategies for coexistence intervention,
To mediate, negotiate and lead interactions with the different stakeholders,
And to test coexistence theory in the reality of conflict zones through a practicum.
The 16-month curriculum includes an academic year in residence in the Boston area followed by six months of combined fieldwork, leading either to an internship report, a master's paper or thesis. The program is designed to help students develop the ability to foster inter-communal and international cooperation in the face of tension and conflict. The approach is interdisciplinary, drawing from fields as diverse as social psychology, international politics, sociology, law, anthropology and cultural studies. The Slifka Foundation supports the fieldwork travel costs.
COEX students may choose to combine a Master of Coexistence and Conflict degree with:
To complement their expertise, our students automatically become part of the Program on Negotiation (PON) at Harvard Law School, which brings together faculty and practitioners from the field of deal-making and conflict resolution. Brandeis University also belongs to a consortium including namely Boston College, Boston University, Tufts University (excluding the Fletcher School) and the School of Urban Studies and Planning at MIT, enabling Heller students to take courses at these schools.
Applications will continue to be accepted on a rolling basis
Students applying to the COEX program are considered for a variety of scholarships, including the Alan B. Slifka Scholarship in Coexistence and Conflict Resolution, a partial tuition award. Scholarships are also offered to students from certain geographic regions and who have particular research interests. For a full listing please click here.
The Heller School also offers generous scholarships to returning Peace Corps, AmeriCorps and City Year participants.
The Heller School provides a $10,000 scholarship for each year of AmeriCorps service (up to two years) and will match the AmeriCorps Educational award (currently $5,350) for any AmeriCorps Alumna or Alumnus enrolled in a full-time degree program.
City Year Scholarships
Each City Year alumna or alumnus who is accepted into our programs will receive a $10,000 Service Scholarship through the Heller/City Year Give a Year National Service program. Heller will also match any Segal Education Award for up to two years of service, regardless of whether or not it has been used.
The Heller School also participates in the Post-9/11 GI Bill Yellow Ribbon Program (YRP). This award is a supplement to Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits and signifies the University’s commitment to supporting veterans who pursue higher education.
The maximum award is $18,077.50 per academic year with another $18,077.50 match from the YRP for a total of $36,155 YRP scholarship.