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Everything posted by 3dender

  1. Have to disagree with woolscarves. Ford seems like the best fit exactly because of cost of living. You're talking about a difference of $20k for school alone + maybe another $30-40k for difference in cost of living between Ann Arbor and either Berkeley or NYC. That's $50-60k more debt that you'll have for a degree that is worth as much as Ford, with a marginally easier time getting a job on either the West or East coast. Ford is every bit as good an education as Berkeley or Wagner - some people would say even better. The difference certainly wouldn't be worth $50k to me. And the Ford
  2. Just so you know, I'd wager that you can repeat that "Diversity" section for literally every policy program that's not at an HBCU. It's pretty much an open secret that they all love to talk about diversity way more than they actually practice it. I'm at Sanford and it's no different (and probably worse in some respects with respect to diversity).
  3. I applied to 8 programs. It wasn't a financial hardship for me and I'm glad I did. I don't think extra apps necessarily take all that much more effort. I.e. the essays are subtly different but if you write out a template you can adapt it to different applications without much extra work. Take my advice with salt though, because I was so long away from school and so far from policy that I really had no idea of my qualifications. I even had 4-5 lesser programs (with later deadlines) on deck in case I got rejected from all of my 1st-tier attempts. Thankfully that ended up being unnecess
  4. People who have been to policy school will value Goldman over SIPA domestically. People who don't know about policy will probably consider them all at a similar level, I imagine in the close order of Columbia-Georgetown-Berkeley. If you want to work internationally it's SIPA with McCourt a close 2nd and Goldman a more distant third. If you want to work on the West Coast it's Berkeley all the way with Columbia 2nd and McCourt 3rd. If you want to work in NYC it's obviously Columbia. If you want to work in DC it's obviously McCourt. Each school has a solid network so you have about the same
  5. Do you know where you want to work? Evans is a great school, and from what I hear near the quality of Harris. But its network is obviously strongest on the West Coast. Harris has more going on in the East Coast. That said, I don't think you'd find it overly challenging to get a job on the East Coast coming from Evans, it would just be easier from Harris. Are you able to go to the open houses? I went to Harris's and almost immediately hated the vibe of the school. Seemed very pretentious. And the coffee was shitty. Another consideration is that if you're planning on doing quant st
  6. There should be a lot of good music going on at MotorCo next weekend, I believe Duke Performances is sponsoring a music series there. That area is fun to hang at, with Fullsteam Brewery right across the street and Cocoa Cinnamon, one of the city's cool coffee shops, right around the corner. If the weather's nice Duke Gardens is beautiful and might be near peak flowers. Lots of great food in town, but you can research that on your own. The packet/tour they give you will have a lot of info too. I hope you enjoy your visit. If you want to say hi I'll be at the Policy for the People tabl
  7. Goldman hands down. But if you really want to be in DC or want to do international affairs, then McCourt.
  8. I'm graduating from Sanford in about a month. A couple of notes on themes I've seen in this thread: 1) I was able to leverage a strong offer from another school into getting $5k more per year back in 2017. I'm not sure if they still do this but it's worth asking Jessica Pan. You might be able to get more for all I know. 2) I have actually been able to get an assistantship for 3/4 semesters, and this is pretty common so you can mostly count on an extra $4k (really $3600 since it is taxed as income).
  9. I am graduating from Sanford in a month, we sure could use more lefties to take my place. You do not have to hide here, on the contrary I have derived great pleasure from antagonizing some of the old fossils around here whenever I could. I've also started a left student group. From what I've learned about Ford since I've been here though, it will be a better educational experience for you, and more up your alley politics-wise (my favorite professor here got his PhD at Ford and loves it). The above poster is correct on renegotiation, at least as of 2017 when I entered. They bumped my o
  10. Hi, I am soon to be graduating from Sanford. 1) Ford and Sanford have a stronger reputation nationally than McCourt. As for curriculum, I can't speak to McCourt but Sanford is strongest with education, social policy and NatSec. They also have a decent international development curriculum. I am a generalist and have been a little disappointed that they don't offer more on local government and nonprofits (which is what I'm ultimately gravitating toward). I know that Ford is good for health and environmental policy, not sure about other areas. 2) McCourt clearly would have the best
  11. That's what I'd suggest. Jessica Pan will be your point of contact.
  12. I'm a 1st year MPP at Sanford. This sounds like a pretty personal decision given the financial aspect, but you might want to check out the Sanford 2018 thread (which I believe got bumped to page 2). I also answered another prospective student in the "stats" thread who was worried about the quant side of Sanford's curriculum. Sanford does have a strong education/social policy pedigree, and probably a good 15-20% of my cohort is going into that field (most of them former educators like myself). Feel free to message me directly. Will you be able to make it to the Open House next Friday?
  13. Hi Arturo. I too was deciding between Harris and Sanford. At their Open Houses (which I encourage you to attend if you're able) my impression was that there wasn't very much difference between the amount of quant emphasis of each program, somewhat surprising since I too was under the impression that Harris was especially quant-heavy. I think Sanford is consciously emulating that aspect of Harris. You're right that Sanford has a relatively heavy social/domestic policy focus. There's also a sizable NatSec contingent, and we're encouraged to take MIDP classes if we want as well. If you h
  14. I can't remember for sure but I think so. In any case you can always ask for an extension to get back to the other schools, most of them are prepared for that and are pretty flexible compared to say PhD programs.
  15. Fwiw, they were the last of 9 schools I heard back from last year. They also had the most generous offer (e.g., if you got that much money from GWU you will probably get a full ride from Maryland).
  16. As with most things, it depends. My sense is that for probably 2/3 of my class, our future employers will merely want us to have significant experience heading up client-facing projects, which Duke absolutely provides. They'll also want to see you passionate about their specific field, which is taken care of by the decent variety of subject-area classes. Everyone comes out of here with at least decent research and analysis skills, so there's nothing there that is really going to separate one candidate from another (again, for that 2/3 faction -- the heavy quant folks I'm sure will land wher
  17. It depends on the program you want. For most of the international-oriented programs at the top of your list, an extra stats course is probably not going to move the needle (especially since they can see your solid aptitude from the GRE). It might impress Harris but I can almost guarantee you that Duke would not care either way (I'm a 1st year at Sanford). Lots of folks came to my program with little to no stats experience, and us students are even pushing them to deemphasize it further. Your general (non-statistics) GPA will be the biggest factor working against you for HKS unfortunately.
  18. I am a 1st year MPP at Sanford, probably lefter than you, and quite happy here. I'd be happy to talk to you (or anyone else) privately about the culture (or anything else) if you have any questions. Open Houses are important if you can make them, but there are ways to substitute if your schedule doesn't allow it. I had comparable offers from Sanford and Harris but hated Harris upon visiting, while loving Sanford. Talking to current students and alumni is also helpful, as well as scouring the course offerings and curriculum requirements. Good luck to you all. Btw I'm not sure abou
  19. Agree 100% with the last two posts. I am 1st year MPP at Duke-Sanford. Duke was #5 last year but has now fallen all the way to #9 (oh no whatever shall I do?!!). It's mostly arbitrary.
  20. LBJ at UT-Austin has the lowest tuition I've seen out of any of the best schools (almost half of what other schools charge). Don't now how much money they give out, but even with generous offers from other schools, going to LBJ at full price was still one of my cheapest options. Other schools I got a significant amount of money from: Duke-Sanford, Maryland, American and Chicago-Harris.
  21. It seems like the best fit for you would be the 1-year "Executive" programs (mostly MPAs I think), which are designed for exactly your circumstances: mid-career professionals who want to further their expertise in the field. I know Princeton's Woodrow Wilson School is one of the best for this. I'm not sure if SIPA or Wagner have 1-year programs (I seem to remember that Wagner does), but in your shoes I definitely wouldn't choose a program of more than 1 year, both for time and money reasons. There are other great schools for Int'l Relations in the DC area: Johns-Hopkins, Georgetown, etc., b
  22. I would also advise against the dual degrees. MSW-macro is quite similar to an MPA, just more focused on the social services field. Also, with regards to salaries, there are several hospital systems in NC that pay excellent salaries for non-LCSW MSWs, starting in the 50s. I just finished working at UNC so can vouch for that one, but I imagine Duke and Novant are similar. My wife just graduated from UNC with her MSW and got really lucky with a good-paying job with the university in research and program coordinating, and it was based purely on a connection she had made with a researcher
  23. You need to get a divorce. Now. You didn't mention kids which makes it even more of a no-brainer. Any avowed Nazi in 2017 is essentially a psychopath. Get out, and tell everyone you (and he) know how big of a Nazi your ex is. Make Nazis/fascists/racists/sexists afraid again.
  24. I definitely think it's a good idea in your shoes to aim for shorter programs, for both time and cost. There are also plenty of accelerated MPA programs that aren't even mid-career/executive (UK, UC-Denver jump to mind).
  25. I've lived in CH for about 15 years. It's a college town, and dress is informal except for special occasions (either personal or business). Also, being a large University, there are all types of people from all types of places, and all types of dress, so don't worry about fitting in. I also wouldn't stress too much about shopping before you get here -- there's a good outlet mall in Mebane, 20ish min. away, where you can get great deals on name brand stuff, from Gap to Saks 5th Ave. Depending on your sensitivity you may have trouble adjusting to the summer humidity, but it's manageable
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