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packrat

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  1. I certainly wouldn't. Most of the top-tier think tanks in Washington require a Ph.D. for full research positions. And many of the top political appointees (especially in IR) are coming from those think tanks and have PhDs. Don't do a MPP unless you want to be a bureaucrat. To answer the OP, I think it's somewhat taboo to admit, which is why nobody here is going to speak up. But on one of my visits to a T-5 program last week, this notion was openly discussed and there was a sense that working at a think tank would put your PhD to good use. Not sure what else you're looking for in an an
  2. Take a year or two off after you graduate and get some real research experience. Don't apply for a PhD unless you are absolutely certain that you LOVE research. Which is not the same as federal or NGO employment.
  3. It wouldn't disqualify you, but since you have a whole year to improve your score, I'd recommend retaking it to see if you can boost it above 156. You will likely be taking at least some methods courses for the general core, and better to assuage any doubt now since you have the time to do so.
  4. Political violence/insurgency: Yale, Stanford, Princeton is growing... Anything else in security: Columbia, MIT, UCLA I didn't "rank" these -- MIT, for example, would be a great fit if you are into the more traditional/historical perspective, but Stanford is a better fit if you are into advanced quant techniques. MIT is more policy relevant than Stanford for the most part. When people talk about security studies, I'd say those are the programs that come up most frequently. Yale and Stanford are probably traditionally strongest for conflict studies and their grads seem to place w
  5. Hi all, Was wondering if anyone can comment on the placement for Princeton vs. Yale (in CP/IR) -- not just where people have placed in the past, but where the trend is going? I'm trying to get a better sense of how Yale's dept overhaul (for lack of a better word) 7 or 8 years ago is impacting graduate training and marketability. From what I've gathered, it's improving, but I'd be curious to hear your thoughts. I'm including Princeton as well because while I'd always heard good things about it's placement, but reviews on here seem to be more mixed. Want to make sure I'm not misinterpret
  6. I've heard this pretty universally from people who've been there in the past few years. I think a lot of its bad rep is from a generation ago. +1. I'm no expert in that subfield, but as I understand it Michigan is easily amongst the top political psychology programs (more so than Yale).
  7. I don't know how reliable Peterson's is, but those numbers seen less than accurate to me based on conversations I've had with people in the dept. Regardless, your reasoning on Harvard seems valid. Harvard in general is also notoriously bureaucratic, so this delay does not at all surprise me.
  8. I'm curious as to why they take so much longer than the other programs. Anyone know how many applicants they typically get and how big their class size is? I understand that Stanford usually has a small class (and had 440 apps this year), but Yale gets around 600-700 and still managed to report last week...I can't imagine Harvard is getting significantly more than that.
  9. Awesome, thank you for checking and so promptly responding. Fingers crossed for you all!
  10. Has anyone contacted Harvard re decision releases for govt PhD? I know we've been saying next week, but is that just a hypothesis or is that coming from their grad student administrator?
  11. Thanks. That's very helpful. I know this person's tenure clock was reset because another prof in the department to which they moved told me it was. Was just told yesterday by a mutual friend/colleague though that this person moved because the type of work they do is a bit more policy oriented, which this person felt was better appreciated/more encouraged in the second dept. I will also ask the prof directly in the manner you suggest. Thanks again, really appreciate it.
  12. I think you should drop a nice note, and for the POIs you really liked, might even leave the door open for future discussions about their research, etc. Building a strong network is really important in the field (and on the job market). Based on my personal experience, you would be amazed at how small the Ivory Tower is, and at how quickly word spreads (good and bad) about reputations. First impressions matter a lot.
  13. At my undergrad (a T-3 public university), the average GPA was 3.2. At one of our peer public institutions it is a 3.1 I think. In hindsight I wish I'd had my LOR writers stress that since I know a lot of people come from schools with borderline absurd grade inflation.
  14. Yes. Well at first I was thinking they could be engineering or something, which could explain the lower GPA. But hopefully the folks designing our bridges are not earning a 153Q.
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