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Chipembere

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About Chipembere

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  1. How is price the question? Georgetown is only $7k more expensive. Clearly you want to go there so don't let $7k stop you.
  2. I don't know much about Fletcher but most of what I've heard has been positive. I had a similar situation to yours and I chose CIPA. Have not been disappointed thus far. I'm just going to repost below what I put in a different thread when someone asked about CIPA... The opportunities at CIPA are virtually limitless and the resources are there. To give you an idea, here is a list of the classes I took first semester: Emerging Markets (Professor Ralph Christy) Food Policy for Developing Countries (Professor Per Pinstrup Andersen) International Public and NGO Management (Professor John Mathiason) Issues in African Development (Professor Muna Ndulo) Labor Economics (Professor Gary Fields) Leaders in Sustainable Global Enterprise (Professor Mark Milstein) Take a minute to look up these courses and professors. Not bad for a first semester and it's only going to get better. During the winter break I took part in a Student Multidisciplinary Applied Research Team run by the renowned Cornell International Institute for Food and Development (http://ciifad.cornel.../engagement.cfm). It was almost fully funded and sent me to Africa (others went to the Philippines, Bangladesh, Thailand to name a few) for two weeks to conduct a consultancy with an SME connecting rural farmers to the market. Hopefully the case study will get published and the findings will be presented during an international symposium at Cornell. I'll have opportunities like this again next winter. Currently in my second semester, I'm taking advantage of one of the off-campus opportunities. You can go to Mexico City, Nepal, Budapest, DC or Rome (and maybe other locations. I'm not sure). I ended up in DC with the World Bank. I'm working full-time and taking three classes. Needless to say I'm busy and definitely shouldn't be spending time here! Just wanted to give you an idea of the possibilities at CIPA. It has to be one of the best values out of any MPA program. Feel free to ask me anything at all about CIPA! Good luck.
  3. I think it depends on what you want to do. I continue to be impressed with CIPA, though. The opportunities are virtually limitless and the resources are there. To give you an idea, here is a list of the classes I took first semester: Emerging Markets (Professor Ralph Christy) Food Policy for Developing Countries (Professor Per Pinstrup Andersen) International Public and NGO Management (Professor John Mathiason) Issues in African Development (Professor Muna Ndulo) Labor Economics (Professor Gary Fields) Leaders in Sustainable Global Enterprise (Professor Mark Milstein) Take a minute to look up these courses and professors. Not bad for a first semester and it's only going to get better. During the winter break I took part in a Student Multidisciplinary Applied Research Team run by the renowned Cornell International Institute for Food and Development (http://ciifad.cornell.edu/engagement.cfm). It was almost fully funded and sent me to Africa (others went to the Philippines, Bangladesh, Thailand to name a few) for two weeks to conduct a consultancy with an SME connecting rural farmers to the market. Hopefully the case study will get published and the findings will be presented during an international symposium at Cornell. I'll have opportunities like this again next winter. Currently in my second semester, I'm taking advantage of one of the off-campus opportunities. You can go to Mexico City, Nepal, Budapest, DC or Rome (and maybe other locations. I'm not sure). I ended up in DC with the World Bank. I'm working full-time and taking three classes. Needless to say I'm busy and definitely shouldn't be spending time here! Just wanted to give you an idea of the possibilities at CIPA. It has to be one of the best values out of any MPA program.
  4. Cornell has one of the best names in Ag. There are so many opportunities here for those interested in what you mentioned I don't even think it's a tough choice. You can even spend a semester working with the WFP in Rome if you play your cards right. Otherwise many people in the program get top internships in DC and elsewhere related to food policy. One of my teacher's last semester won the World Food Prize and was spectacular. Connections run deep with top policy think tanks focused on ag policy too.
  5. 99% of those applying out of undergrad do not have your GPA, GRE or extensive quant background. Therefore they need the work experience, especially if funding is an issue. Congrats on your success and GL in Chicago!
  6. I certainly can't comment on whether or not you want to 'study library' or not, but from the sound of your post you've pretty much made up your mind. As an alum of UW-Madison I'm obviously biased, but all of the points you've laid out in your post lead to Pittsburgh. I see virtually no 'pros' for Madison listed other than two professors that have some research in an area you're interested in. If you are truly second guessing this move in life, do you currently have a job that you could keep and defer/reapply to school until you are truly sure you want to pursue this career? Why do you want to do this at all?
  7. After agonizing over this decision for weeks, I've decided against SIPA. Ultimately the debt and the way that students seem to be treated turned me away. GL all.
  8. Funny...I slept on it and now I'm feeling differently. This choice is killing me. Yesterday I was 90% sure about SIPA, today I'm actually leaning toward Cornell. What's your feeling at this point? I think I remember you, although we didn't talk much since there was that fire drill. I didn't get any funding, but I have enough savings to cover about half of the costs leaving me with roughly 70k in loans depending on 2nd year funding. If you want to talk about this further, I'd be happy to inbox you my number. Might be good to bounce some ideas off of each other...
  9. After attending the admitted student day, I think I'll be going for it. MPA-DP here!
  10. Hey Eclectic, I'm in the same position and am 90% sure I'm going with SIPA MPA-DP. Not an easy decision, though.
  11. ha! Didn't mean to discourage you. Maxwell, again, is a wonderful school. They've also given you a nice scholarship and it's always a good sign when a program shows real interest in you. Maxwell, Korbel or Elliott...you really can't go wrong. Also, I should add that a good amount of students at Maxwell are also able to secure additional funding after enrolling. Is Elliott off the table for you since they didn't offer any money?
  12. I know that many people wanted to but were unable to attend these open houses. In an attempt to provide more information to those people, here is a brief wrap-up of how it went. Sorry if it's fragmented, I’m just freestyling this and putting down my thoughts as they come. If anyone has specific questions, feel free to ask. I will inevitably leave a lot out. MAXWELL. I arrived the day before the event and spent time walking around campus and exploring the town. While the campus is big and relatively beautiful, the surrounding town leaves a lot to be desired. It is small and unappealing. Furthermore, the town seemed to be overrun with undergraduates, which is to be expected. I had a hard time picturing myself living in this place for two years, especially since my concentration is in int’l development and my mind tends to wander. The next day many of my concerns were alleviated during the Admitted Student function. The Maxwell School is a community unto itself, and a diverse community at that. The day was relatively unorganized and lackluster, but the strengths of the school did shine through. It is a school that struck me as being very collaborative and team oriented. Students seemed to look out for one another’s best interests and all of the professors were accessible. The effectiveness of their career services and the ‘Maxwell Mafia’ was emphasized. They gave me good reason to believe that they are good at placing their graduates across many different sectors and there is a dedicated team that works with students on professional development. Furthermore, Maxwell does bring in recruiters and other notable names in public affairs to talk to students. I did notice that the average age of the students seemed to be a bit young, especially on the IR side. Several of the other admitted students on the MPA side had very little experience as well, but seemed intelligent. Overall, I was impressed with Maxwell. The school was big and had a lot of resources available to it. The professor’s seemed engaged and dedicated. If you don’t mind living in Syracuse, I can see why Maxwell could be a good choice. CIPA This program won me over during the admitted student day. Cornell is an extraordinary campus with virtually limitless resources. Surrounding Ithaca is a liberal town with two other colleges. A lot of students. Ithaca I much preferred over Syracuse because of the feel and aesthetics of the place. The area surrounding Ithaca is beautiful and there are tons of outdoor activities available. The admitted student day itself was much more formal than at Maxwell. It was well run and thorough. Professors and students alike presented on various aspects of the program including SMART, Capstone and abroad opportunities. I was very impressed with the students, much more so than at Maxwell. They were professional, articulate and engaged. The staff made it clear that they would work with students to make the experience unique for them and allow them to pursue their interests. I was able to meet with one of the Professor’s and it was clear that she was world-class. The professor’s there have connections that run deep, greatly enhancing the chances that fellows will find employment upon graduation. We also took a full tour of the campus and at that point the magnitude of Cornell began to sink in. After the tour we went to the Little Red Barn, which is for graduate students exclusively. There they sell $1 beers and it is a great place to meet other graduate students from other programs. A good informal networking opportunity too. Here I was able to talk to many current and prospective students. They were all interesting, intelligent and down to earth. I felt the students at CIPA were of a higher caliber than at Maxwell, but the sample size was admittedly small so do take that into account. All in all, CIPA made us feel extremely welcome during the visit and the staff was 100% on top of their game. This program felt VERY strong. Of course the flexibility it offers is unique and not for everyone. If you want a cookie cutter program CIPA is not for you, and I can see how it would be easy to get lost if you don’t know what you want. Having said that, if you do know what you want, you will have all of the resources of one of the best universities in the world at your fingertips. Please, if you have specific questions go ahead and ask. I know a lot about each program but don't have time to type up everything. Good luck!
  13. How are you planning on financing this?
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