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mppbluedevil13

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  1. Hey SS1987, Great question. Unfortunately, I don't really know! I think your best bet would be to shoot an email to mppadmit@duke.edu with your questions. Will you be coming to the Admissions Office's Open House on Friday? From what I understand, there will be financial aid representatives available throughout the day who could probably help to answer your question. Sorry I couldn't be of more help SS1987 but best of luck and please feel free to ask me any other questions you might have about Sanford! Good luck! Best, mppbluedevil13
  2. Hey David, Thanks for the great questions! I definitely know where you are coming from as I certainly asked myself the same questions before coming back to school. In general, I think policy school is pretty heterogeneous in terms of backgrounds and experiences. Here at Sanford, there are a lot of very bright and impressive people - some of which came in with strong quant skills and others who might have only taken one or two stats/econ classes in undergrad. Given the wide range of quant experience, I think our quant (e.g., stats and econ) professors do a really good job with the pace and content of the courses to make sure that all students are keeping up and learning. Plus, there are several opportunities to receive instruction or help outside of class through TA sessions and office hours with the professors. Students form study groups almost immediately and in the second semester there are several group assignments for the quant classes. In the end, given the tight-knit nature of the academic community here at Sanford, even if you wanted to, I think it would be very difficult to not perform at a high-level because your professors, TAs, fellow classmates wouldn't let you! In terms of the difficulty of the program, it is challenging but manageable. I have definitely been pushed, but have never felt that I have been given impossible tasks. I do not have official statistics about dropout rates but I assume they would be almost 0. I don't know anyone who has dropped out of my class and my sense is that the overwhelming majority of folks in my class really like it here. Unfortunately, I also don't know how many students need more than 2 years to complete the program - although, I would guess it's probably a pretty low number. I hope this is helpful and please feel free to shoot any additional questions my way! Best, mppbluedevil13
  3. Hey o1lo1l, Good question! I don't think there are tuition waivers per se for assistantships. Instead, you would be paid for the assistantship and you could spend the money on tuition or however you best see fit. Good luck with everything and please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any other questions about Sanford! Best, mppbluedevil13
  4. SS1987, Congratulations on your admission to Sanford! As an MPP, you can absolutely take MIDP classes. However, you will probably only be able to take a couple MIDP courses during your first-year as you will have four core classes during the first semester and three to four during the second semester. Your second year, you can really begin to start taking more electives (i.e., MIDP courses) and you can definitely do your Master's Project on an international development related topic. In addition, I assume that you would probably be interested in conducting your summer internship in between your first and second year in the area of international development. Also, you can select a policy track in global policy or international development. Finally, you can acquire a certificate from the Duke Center for International Development in International Development if you take six international development related courses (mostly MIDP courses but some MPP courses count as well). All in all, you can make your Sanford MPP as international development focused as you want it to be. And if you do, as I indicated above, I think you will find it to be a very rewarding experience! Please don't hesitate to send any more questions my way! Best, mppbluedevil13
  5. o1lo1l, Those are great questions! In terms of assistantships, they are certainly available and my sense is that a good number of first-year MPPs have one. The assistantships can be teaching assistantships (assigned to a specific class and mainly facilitates small group discussions/study sessions with students, grades papers, etc.), research assistantships (assigned to a specific professor to support them with a current research project) or graduate assistantships (assigned to a particular administrative department within Sanford and support their efforts in event management, marketing, PR, writing etc.). I believe the assistantships pay approximately $4,000 a semester. In terms of other ways to help pay for tuition and fees, there are opportunities for part-time work/paid internships during the year. Although being a full-time student takes up a good amount of time, I do know some MPP students that have outside jobs and are doing fine balancing their studies and outside work. It really all depends on what your preferences and priorities are. Marie, How are you?!? I think I responded to some of your questions in another thread started by someone deciding between Sanford and SIPA. Nevertheless, I just wanted to reiterate that the MIDP program at Sanford is really strong. Unfortunately, I don't know too much about employment opportunities after the program. However, I think that the MIDP students are very impressive and I would be surprised if the vast majority didn't find meaningful employment in prestigious public and multilateral institutions. In terms of interaction between the MIDP and MPP programs, I think that there is a healthy amount. However, I would say that the MPPs interested in international development are the ones that most interact with MIDP students and vice versa. Many MPPs take MIDP classes and vice versa. ALso there are a couple of joint MIDP-MPP intramural sports teams. Socially, both the MIDP and MPP programs have close-knit communities that are very active outside of class. Hopefully this is helpful and please do not hesitate to ask me any additional questions! Best of luck in the decision making process! Best, mppbluedevil13
  6. Marie, Please see my post to SS1987. The triangle is home to several organizations engaged in international development, mostly in the fields of health and education - although, RTI and FHI 360 are huge USAID contractors cased in the Triangle that conduct research and implement projects in a wide array of development fields. As you can probably tell, I think Duke is very strong in the area of international development! The MIDP program at Sanford is like 90% international and consists of mostly mid-career professionals. The average amount of work experience for the MPP program is like 2-6 years. The MIDP program is really good and I am continually impressed by the quality of the MIDP students.
  7. SS1987, I am a current MPP student at Sanford and I must say it has been a fantastic experience. I came to the program with 8+ years of public sector experience in the area of international development and made lots of international development contacts/networks during my time in DC. I must say that the Duke network has blown me away in terms of how connected they are in DC in the fields of international development, health, education, economic development, environment etc. As campussartorialist indicated, the Sanford and Duke networks are very accesible and very willing to help current students find internships/jobs etc. Also, Sanford houses the Duke Center for International Development (DCID) - which is a great resource and there are plenty of opportunities to take classes there and conduct research with DCID professors. Also, many of the professors that teach the core classes for the MPP (stats, econ etc.) are actively conducting research in several areas of international development. As a result, a lot of the examples in our core classes are international development-related. Many of my colleagues will be interning with UN agencies in Brussels this summer while others will be with agencies like USAID in Rawanda and UNHCHR in Jordan. If you are interested in global policy/international development, I think you will find Sanford to be a very stimulating enviornment! Please let me know if you have any additional questions as I would be more than happy to answer them!
  8. Hey Juhual, Great questions! I think there might be information on internship and/or job placements in the career services section of Sanford's website. I'm not sure about starting salary but I know that a lot of folks go into government (at all levels), NGOs, and the private sector (consulting etc.). Durham has some pretty solid housing options. I would check out this site for some current options: http://studentaffairs.duke.edu/forms/chouse/search.php I hope this is helpful and best of luck with the decision-making process! Cheers, MPPBlueDevil
  9. Hi everyone! I'm a current first-year student at Duke University's Sanford School of Public Policy and I remember that this time last year was challenging trying to decide among various options. As such, I thought I'd get on here and try to offer any and all insights that I have on why I ended up choosing Duke. Feel free to write back to this thread about anything you want - program components, curriculum, specializations, electives, extracurriculars, people, Durham as a city, social life, anything - and I will be happy to help. It may not be an instant response, but I'll certainly get back to you all as soon as possible. Cheers, MPPBlueDevil
  10. With respect to Duke's funding, Sanford provides merit-based scholarships. Also, most students receive fellowships ranging from partial to full tuition.
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