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About mapiau

  • Rank
    Espresso Shot

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  • Location
    San Diego
  • Application Season
    2016 Fall
  • Program
    International Affairs

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  1. I was in a similar situation to you, and when you are a few years out of undergrad your GPA starts mattering a whole lot less than when you are in school. I don't remember my exact GPA in my first two years of undergrad, but I failed advanced calculus twice and got Cs in two spanish classes. I also freaked out about how these bad grades were going to stop me from getting into any grad school. I ended up graduating with a 3.5. I only worked full time a year between undergrad and applying to grad school, but with similar GRE scores to you got into AU SIS, SAIS, Syracuse Maxwell, Fletcher, a
  2. The GPS courses are for the most part very practical. The school seems to pride itself on being professionally oriented, and I do not think it is a good fit for people who want to go on to PhDs. Many courses teach practical skills (the data courses for example, or case studies in the international management courses), many have very valuable presentation requirements, and the capstone classes are explicitly professionally focused and work with external clients. The curriculum is also pretty open, and within the MIA/MPP degrees the individual career tracks don't have very many course requiremen
  3. I think energy and environment is one of GPS' strongest fields. The program has been increasing its focus on this area recently, and there are a lot of alumni who get jobs in the field afterwards. This is also one field where the California location is an advantage and not a disadvantage. There are several GPS faculty who specialize in energy and environmental policy, with David Victor, Joshua Graff Zivin, and Kate Ricke being the main ones. I found the energy and environment course offerings to be strong. GPS is also adding new classes and faculty in the energy area especially. Addition
  4. Hey everyone, I graduated from the GPS MIA program last year and am happy to try answering any questions you have about the program. I'm an American and work in the energy industry, so I can't speak to the international student experience, the security/international politics side of things, or continuing on to PhDs, but can probably answer some more general questions.
  5. Which region interests you the most? Selecting which region to focus on based on its desirability to admissions committees is getting it backwards -- you attend grad school for a few years, but your career is decades.
  6. When talking to current students I found it revealing to ask what the worst thing about their school was. I'd also ask how effective the career services department actually is, which seems to be highly variable between school and makes a big difference in the job hunt.
  7. Won't let me edit, but I checked and the GIS series lets students do their projects in groups.
  8. Yes, the core classes are held in an auditorium-style lecture hall and are large. These classes usually have homework assignments and midterms and finals graded by TAs. For example, QM2 has 4 pretty intense homework assignments that are done in the statistical program Stata (students turn in their writeups as well as their code), as well as an individual final project and in-class written final. Policy-Making Processes (PMP) has in-class tests, 2 individual policy memo homework assignments, and cold calling. (Cold calling in such large classes is kinda challenging and some professors manage it
  9. Yeah, most of the first year curriculum is filled with core classes, with electives and the capstone during the second year. For the MIA a typical first year is: Fall GPCO 401. Microeconomics for Policy and Management GPCO 412. Globalization, the World System, and the Pacific GPCO 453. Quantitative Methods I Language Winter GPCO 400. Policy-Making Processes GPCO 415. Accounting and Finance for Policy Makers GPCO 454. Quantitative Methods II Language Spring GPCO 403. International Economics GPCO 410. International Poli
  10. Yes, while a few GPS students are admitted to PhD programs (and there are more who come in wanting to pursue a PhD in the future) it is a professional program and is not focused on preparing students for PhDs. The various capstone project options also are professionally-focused rather than an original research thesis. If you strongly want to pursue a PhD other programs may be more relevant. I think there are a couple things going on here. First the GPS employment outcome statistics do not include MPP students since the program is so new. Second is that the overall program's high share
  11. I live in on-campus grad housing. When I moved in in Fall 2016 the grad housing was significantly impacted and students in my class often remained on the wait list through their first year. (I was able to move into grad housing in August by saying I wanted to move in during July—I paid for an extra month, but since most students want to move in during August I jumped to the front of the line.) This fall a large new grad housing complex opened (Mesa Nueva), and while I don't know the details my understanding is that the wait list is much shorter now. Most of the first years in the program now s
  12. When I took the GPS prep program last year we had two weeks of math camp reviewing high school math and derivative calculus, followed by three weeks of introductory Quantitative Methods and microeconomics. The QM and Econ classes are taught by the professors teaching those classes in the fall quarter, so these prep classes are basically extensions of those classes. Prep is roughly four hours of class time a day, and the QM and Econ classes have finals. Grades aren't recorded however, and it's a good opportunity to get back into the groove of school if you've been away for a few years. The
  13. Oh, I also agree that the 24.99% GSRships don't offer very many benefits and know they're somewhat controversial. I know some GPS students who have 50% TA positions in undergrad departments, and while they have more benefits the workload is very heavy. I don't have any firsthand knowledge of on-campus work opportunities, so I'll not comment on them any further!
  14. I'll defer to you then. I don't know which portion of GPS students with TAships or GSRs are at 24.99% versus higher.
  15. I disagree that TA and RA (GSR or Graduate Student Researcher is the more common term) positions are rare for GPS students. While GPS students don't TA for undergrad econ or poli sci classes many have TA jobs in the undergrad college writing programs (which don't have their own grad students), and a decent number of second year GPS students TA for first year classes. I don't know the actual numbers, but off the top of my head I'd say roughly a quarter to a third of second years are TAs or GSRs. And yes this is extremely hectic with the quarter system, but people make it work. I don't know
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