Campaign Georgetown /The Hoya Dr. Peter Krogh has been credited with rebuilding the SFS.
Georgetown University’s nationally and internationally renowned Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service owes much of its prestige to Dr. Peter F. Krogh.
Even if he never came to Georgetown, Krogh would still be a notable figure in the foreign policy world. His endeavors include a job as a White House Fellow, the publication of many articles on foreign policy, a job as the moderator of “Great Decisions,” a show on foreign affairs and the establishment of the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs. He has received multiple awards, including an Emmy for his television show “World Beat,” the Commander’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany and the Cross of Honor for Science and Art by the Republic of Austria. Krogh also holds a Doctorate of Law from Georgetown University and has a Chair in Geopolitics and Justice in International Affairs endowed in his name at the university. Also active in the Washington, D.C. community, Krogh is a board member for several non-profit organizations including the Middle East Institute and the Foreign Policy Association.
It is this type of commitment to world affairs that won him the deanship of the largest undergraduate school of international relations at the tender age of 32. Previously, he served as Associate Dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, his alma mater.
When Krogh took on the job in 1970, the SFS had only three offices. The school had major problems with its staffing and curriculum. These problems were so acute that the Mid-Atlantic Accrediting Service almost did not accredit the school in 1969. Krogh says he wanted to take the SFS “upward, because it was down on its heels, it had been run down over the years . it was in tough shape.” He adds jokingly, “If I had known how tough shape it was in, I might not have come!”
Krogh proceeded to “reestablish the school with a strong curriculum, strong faculty, its own financial means and its own self-confidence,” he said. “All of that had to be created. It took about three to five years to get rolling.”
When Krogh came to the SFS, the school also suffered from rifts between the faculty because departmental reorganizations had left them scattered and unorganized. Krogh says that the hardest part of serving as Dean of the SFS was “getting on top of faculty politics.” Krogh had to be conscious of many divisions within the school. Eventually, he took the lead, and formed a separate faculty for the SFS. This greatly helped the organization and politics of the school by creating an identity for faculty as SFS professors.
With its own endowment, the SFS was able to make more independent financial decisions. The school spearheaded the movement to construct the ICC, where the SFS and many academic departments are now located. Although the building’s construction was fundamental in the development of the university, Krogh says he wishes he had “built a bigger ICC.”
Under Krogh’s leadership in the 1970s, the school also expanded its programs to encompass many of the ones it has today. Krogh brought programs such as Asian Studies, African Studies, the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding, European Studies and the Institute for the Study of Ethics and International Affairs to the SFS, as well as many other specialized fields. In addition to introducing these new fields to the SFS, Krogh brought other significant changes to the school.
He introduced a faculty advising system for upperclassmen who sought advice about school and career choices. He also established Dean Seminars, where famous speakers spoke to interested students about different topics in their career fields. Krogh proved to be in touch with students when he came up with the idea of taking them on field trips. He escorted students to various places in Washington, D.C., including Capitol Hill and the White House.
Krogh served as Dean of the School of Foreign Service for 25 years, stepping down on the school’s 75th anniversary in 1995. Though retired, Krogh remains active in the SFS, currently serving as Dean Emeritus for the school. Current SFS Dean Robert Gallucci describes Krogh as “the most impossible act to follow. Yet, he is the perfect person to follow. He takes on his new role with enthusiasm.”
Gallucci believes that Krogh’s continued involvement with the SFS is extremely beneficial.
“He is a reliable host for events, he always helps us in our development efforts . He has a network of former students and friends which continues to be extremely important to the school,” he said.
Krogh also teaches a proseminar, and holds office hours twice a week in the ICC.
Krogh seems satisfied with his work at the SFS.
“I think the school internationally is very highly regarded because it’s Georgetown, because it’s Jesuit, because it is located in Washington, D.C., and because it has a real history behind it,” he said. “It’s been around for 84 years. It has staked its claim to seniority in its field. I think its banner is flying high on a global basis.”
Krogh also asserts that the school’s reputation and reception in the United States is just as strong as it is on the international level.
“At home, we can claim without trepidation to have the best program at the undergraduate level. At the graduate level, we must be in the top three,” he says. The SFS also boasts a number of famous alumni, including former President Bill Clinton (SFS ’68).
Krogh’s recent accomplishments include being one of this year’s “Men of Substance and Style” in Washington’s Life Magazine. The men were chosen by the magazine and Saks Fifth Avenue based on their contributions to society and community service and leadership.
Today, the SFS is in good hands, according to Krogh. “Dean Gallucci is well known and highly respected,” Krogh says. “He’s been a real powerhouse.” The school itself has continued to flourish and build on the improvements made by Krogh for many years. “Once we got on a roll, things improved rapidly,” Krogh says. “I feel very good about where the school is today.”