Thanks to everyone in this thread! It’s really helpful.
Coming from US, but recently served in the peace corps until a month or so ago.
American SIS (coverdell, 29k)
GW (in off waitlist, no word on funding yet)
SAIS MAIAA (2 hrs bologna, awaiting reconsideration)
Waitlisted at Georgetown but probably not getting in nor would I get funding I believe.
it’s btwn SAIS and Fletcher for me. The MAIA program is cheaper than the standard MA program. I would spend both years in Bologna so the cost of living is less. MAIA would require a fewer Econ courses and is a create your own MA while also doing a thesis/research paper. This is attractive to me because as someone who isn’t 1000% what they want to do and as someone who has multiple interests it would allow me to gain more knowledge in different areas while still finding an in depth focus area. I want to get up to speed on the different sectors I could work in in order to have a more complete education entering the work force as I am not coming from an IR background. being in bologna is a big plus as I am not really interested in working within the US, and being abroad for two more years establishes me an international and the career events SAIS offers would open more doors for me to work abroad. That said I would have the option to transfer to DC if I desired. Based on the open house, SAIS feels like they’re a little more interesting in helping you find what you want to do.
Fletcher on the other hand tugs at me a bit bc I have heard great things about the Fletcher community. The areas I would go into I am really interested in (human security and conflict resolution). I know if I went to Fletcher I would be fine and happy, whereas Bologna feels like a risk reward. The one thing I’ve gathered from this forum is that Fletcher is better if you know exactly what you want, and I’m not 100% (I’ll probably try to the NGO/Public/IGO) route). The panels I have seen for Fletcher tend to reflect this (most answers were “do you own research or “once you know well help you”). Their career panel also seemed slightly more domestic/government focused. The amount of networking opportunities is less than SAIS Europe (and the sais opportunities are more interesting to me)
Currently Fletcher and SAIS cost the same. Once I heard about funding from SAIS that might change things. It’s hard for me to evaluate GW without knowing aid. Americans curriculum just doesn’t do it for me. I probably won’t have to borrow for cost of living unless I live in DC. I also have lived in DC before and moving back isn’t a huge draw (though I do like dc).