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  1. Hey everyone! I've been browsing through this site the last couple of months, but this is my first time actually posting here, so I hope I'm posting in the right category. I'm beginning to research some Master's in Public Policy Programs, and I'm a little lost. So here is a little bit of relevant background information that might be helpful to understand my situation. I'm in my last year of undergrad, and I graduate in May 2018. I'm a psychology major and biology minor. I have a 3.977 GPA. I was planning on pursuing a career in neuropsychology for most of my undergraduate career, but then I studied abroad for a semester, and that completely changed everything. I've had some decent travelling experiences. I've also been involved in a pretty wide array of research experiences, ranging from neuroscience to political science. I've had several classes in experimental methodology and statistics, but I'm still comparatively weaker in quantitative fields than what I think MPP programs are looking for. I've taken a variety of classes outside of psychology and biology as well. So for the future, this is my tentative plan. I'm applying for a bunch of summer internships in public health. They're pretty competitive, so I don't know if I'll get into any. In the case that I don't, I'll just study all summer for the GRE. After this upcoming summer, I plan on teaching English in China for a year. After that year, I plan on applying to a one year master's program in Global Affairs at Tsinghua University in China, with a focus on either public policy or international affairs. If I don't get into that program, or if I do get into the program and after I complete it, I plan on doing the Peace Corps (or something like it) for two years. Finally, I plan on applying to MPP programs with a focus either in Public Health or International Affairs after all of this. This is all pretty tentative at this point, and it all depends on what I'm accepted to. So with all this in mind, how does this sound as a tentative rough plan to get into some good MPP programs? I'm pretty lost since this is such a new field and such a recent change for me, so I'm kind of struggling to find some grounding. I'm seeing that the best MPP programs like to see a few years of work experience in their applicants before they apply, so what kind of experiences are especially useful to have when applying for MPP programs? What kind of experiences are useful for these pathways in particular? What can I do at this point to strengthen my application and enhance my competitiveness? What can make me standout as an applicant? Will it be detrimental to come from a psychology and biology background? How important is a quantitative foundation for MPP programs? How important is the GRE when applying for MPP programs? Is there anything you wish you would've known when you were just getting into researching MPP programs? Please let me know if I can clarify my situation or my questions in any way. Thank you in advance for taking the time to help me out!! I appreciate it a lot.
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