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  1. Hello, Since a lot of you appear knowledgeable about government jobs and the educational opportunities in Washington D.C, I am hoping you can help me with my graduate school dilemma. I am in my late 20s and I am looking to pivot into a career field involving regional expertise of Russia and Eastern Europe. I'd like to work in the IC (particularly DIA) in the future, but I'm open to other public service positions that would allow me to use my language skills and regional understanding. I will provide some background about myself to further explain my situation: I am an immigrant from Eastern Europe (though a U.S citizen for some time now) who attended Yale for undergrad. I studied psychology and chemistry, though I have some poor grades from math classes and engineering due to some unfortunate circumstances and general lack of direction. I won't waste your time making excuses for myself. I took some language courses during undergrad, including Russian, and dabbled ever so slightly with regional studies at the end of my degree. I would have majored in Eastern European studies or something similar had I discovered this earlier. After graduation I took some time off and then started to work in various random jobs to gain experience. Unfortunately, doing something completely unrelated to my major after graduation (even from a prestigious school) proved to be impossible. I did some unpaid internships where I could; lived, traveled and interned in the region for a few years. The more time that passed after graduation the more difficult it has become to get my foot in the door. Applying to jobs on USAJOBS proved unfruitful (not sure if that's just me or if that's a universal experience for entry level positions). I figured going back to school for a master's degree, building on my language skills and doing internships would be the best way to find opportunities. My priorities, in terms of employment, is to do something I am interested in and find meaningful. I strongly believe that making enough money to live comfortably is plenty, and beyond that I really value the nature of the work rather than salary. My parents also taught me to avoid debt, which I've done successfully so far, and I really want to avoid that at all costs going forward. As such, I'm very hesitant to take out huge loans to afford graduate school especially considering the living costs in most urban areas. I applied this cycle to a variety of regional programs. I have been admitted to the European and Eurasian Studies Master of Arts at GW's Elliott (no funding), and at AU SIS Comparative & Regional Studies (about 50% scholarship). Still waiting to hear back from a few other programs, and have been rejected from Harvard already. I did my undergrad at a prestigious school, and for me the glitter and idealization of elite universities has worn off. Not because they aren't great, but because I don't think the name gets you everywhere nor matters too much outside of academia / finance / consulting. Correct me if I'm mistaken and it matters a lot for government / IR jobs. My questions are: How is the AU program for my goals? Does anyone have experience with it? Should I take AU's offer? Through part time work and internships it would be financially feasible to not come out with significant debt. Should I consider reapplying to regional programs outside of D.C and add-on programs that have FLAS funding, and try again next year? It's possible I have more luck with additional experience, and get more funding at a different institution. How important is it being in D.C for securing a government position? How important is the "brand name" of the institution? I know that master's degrees aren't generally funded, at least not fully, and I am grateful to have gotten a fairly generous offer from AU. I don't know enough about D.C life to evaluate how it is perceived by employers, I just tried to cast a wide net when applying because of my strange background. I also wonder if I should continue to build on my profile and try again next year, and cast an even wider net, to get more funding of get into a more prestigious program. In truth, I feel old. I've spoken to people applying to these kinds of programs and they're often right out of undergrad, and I still feel behind them in accomplishments. I kick myself for not having a sense of direction in undergrad and squandering an ivy league education, but I know I can't fix the past and I also can't spend the next decade(s) crying about it. So, I am trying to figure out the best way to move forward and I would greatly appreciate any advice from this community. Thank you so much in advance!!!
  2. I was just accepted to SIPA and SAIS - Bologna; SIPA gave me no funding and SAIS gave me a $30K fellowship award. I am very torn because my heart was set on going to SIPA but it is hard to pass up the financial aid. I plan to study international development, with a focus on finance. I feel as though SIPA is the better program and location for this, but uncertain as to the difference in reputation amongst the two, especially considering I was accepted into the Bologna program as SAIS....not sure if this is less prestigious or competitive? Does anyone have thoughts or recommendations to help me in my decision? Thank you!
  3. Financial generosity and aid is one of the most important factors that we consider when we apply and make our decisions. I am hoping to start a thread where we post about programs that give out generous funding. This thread will be resourceful to the future applicants who want to know about the schools and their aid policy. Let's compile it in this format - School and Program: Financial aid info: (for example, based on what you've heard about the program and what you've seen. info like only 1-2 people gets full ride, everyone gets minimum 15k, everyone gets full ride etc. of that sort) In the program/Accepted?: Yes/No (if possible with your aid info as well)
  4. How many students get a full tuition fee waiver at Duke Divinity School for M.Div? I am asking this question because while searching on web, the cost after financial aid is showing in negative numbers. Does that mean that most of the students get aids as well as stipends along with it? I'm an international candidate and hence I'll consider a school only if I get a full ride scholarship. What are the chances? Is it solely based on GPA?
  5. Hello all, I'm an American student in my final year of university applying to graduate school. I have finally received all my decisions, but I'm having trouble understanding how to apply for loans and how to know what I've received. I'm starting to feel anxious because I've also applied to several schools outside of the country that I would really like to attend, but accommodation is starting to book up while I figure out my financial situation. I was expecting to receive at least some loans, but I was surprised to not receive anything. I would really appreciate your help in clarifying what's going on! Here's some more information about my situation: I took out both Direct Subsidized and Direct Unsubsidized loans all four years of my undergraduate studies. I filled out the FAFSA for 2021–2022 as an independent and indicated I would be continuing from my bachelor's to do a master's. My FAFSA was processed back in February, so all the schools I applied to should have seen it by now. My FAFSA Student Aid Report says "Based upon data provided by the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) and your grade level, we have determined that you may have received a total amount of undergraduate student loans that is close to or equal to the loan limits established for the federal loan programs. Therefore, your eligibility for additional student loans may be limited." I was very fortunate to receive merit scholarships from all the domestic schools I applied to. However, when I look at my aid packages on my acceptance portals, the only aid I see are my merit scholarships. No loans. Based on the above, I have a few questions: What's the "normal" timeline for aid in general? Is your financial aid package, complete with loans, supposed to come out at the same time as your admissions decision? My guess is that I've hit the threshold for Direct Subsidized and Direct Unsubsidized loans since I've already taken out those types of loans to support my undergraduate education. If this is true, what other federal loans am I eligible for to support my graduate education? It seems that I can apply for the Direct PLUS loan, but I'd like to confirm this. How do I handle the fact that the application for Direct PLUS loans doesn't come out until April? The schools I have offers from are requiring that I respond to their offers by April 1 or April 15, and I am concerned that the turnaround for the Direct PLUS loan application won't be quick enough before the offer reply deadlines. After applying for a Direct PLUS loan, what happens? Do I have to contact the financial aid department of each individual school to discuss my aid package? What's the best way to get in touch with financial aid departments for schools outside the country? I'd ideally like to call them, but their numbers are international numbers. If you've read this far, thank you so very much. I am the first in my family to go to graduate school and there is a lot that I am still figuring out!
  6. Hi! International applicant here. Just heard back from University of Minnesota. Got accepted to the MPP program, the letter did not mention anything about funding though. Hoping to find out people who also received an offer recently. Do they communicate separately on financial aid?
  7. I have been accepted into the Duke MS Economics and Computation program. I wanted to know the reviews of this particular program. What is the cost of the attendance? Also I wanted to know about the funding, financial aid and availability of student jobs.
  8. Aside from FASFA and the scholarships offered by the schools I am applying to, what are some legit websites that offer scholarships for grad students? I am not looking for loans.
  9. Hi. I currently manage an animated series production in a company in Pakistan. I want a better grounding in film and production aspects. I want to go to a grad school ASAP (deadlines are close) but I am having a hard time finding scholarships and funding for international students in art/film schools. Can anyone help? Any country is good though I prefer the US. I am interested in RIT, Pratt, SCAD, and Chicago NY. If you could mention schools with January deadlines, I would prefer that.
  10. I applied to Sacramento state for their msw program. I received and email that stated the following : Thank you for your interest in Sac State for the 2019-2020 academic year! We have received your financial aid application but need you to add your Social Security Number (SSN) to your My Sac State account before we can start processing your file. How to enter your SSN: Log on to your MySacState and access your Student Center page; Select the “Add SSN” link under Personal Information section; Enter your Social Security Number and Save After entering your Social Security Number, monitor your To Do List and submit all requested documents by the priority document deadline May 1, 2019. You will receive a financial aid award notification after all documents are submitted and processed by our office. The notification will be sent to your My Sac State account with details regarding your award eligibility for the academic year Further details about the financial aid process can be found on our website at www.csus.edu/finaid Do you guys think this is a good sign I've been accepted?? I did not get into sf states program (which I hear is extremely difficult to get into) and I did not get an email like this. I don't want to get ahead of myself. I'm going to assume it means nothing until I know for sure but just wanting some input...
  11. Hi! How tf do I get schools to give me more money (i.e. reevaluate my financial aid and scholarships given)? Like who do I contact, how do I go about it? Do I email a school and say "Hi, you gave me ___ but this other school is giving me____ so could I have more?" lol. I am specifically trying to get more money from UMich and Columbia, but would love to hear anyone's advice/experience from literally any program.
  12. Hey all! So I got the most awaited acceptance letter from my dream school today, that is, Johns Hopkins University. I am super excited about it. However, I received the letter from the Vice Dean of Graduate Education and not from the department and it included the following statement: Please see the welcome letter from your department for more detailed information regarding any individualized funding support, program specifics and options, advisor arrangements, and program orientation requirements. I haven't received the welcome letter yet. Should I wait for the letter or start contacting the faculty or the program manager for the available TA-ship positions?
  13. hi all. I've been admitted to a PhD program and I'm getting an ok stipend, but relative to the city I'm moving to I'll barely be making it by. Do cost of living scholarships even exist? Are there things that I can apply for to subsidize cost of living? FYI I'm on a student visa
  14. As an undergraduate, I became ineligible for federal aid due to maxing out my cumulative attempted credit hours (who knew starting college as a directionless 18 year old might be messy?) I'm thankful that my first graduate program acceptance letter came today, and that the program has offered full funding and stipend for the duration of my studies...but I will need to find a bit of extra aid to cover/refinance/push into deferment some higher interest debts that, while I can manage, will make my budget ultra-tight otherwise. My question is, does satisfactory academic progress (SAP - what the Fed uses to determine aid eligibility) reset as a graduate student/not carry over from undergrad?
  15. I wanted to get the ball rolling here for the John Loiello AFSOAS FISH Scholarship. This scholarship is through SOAS University of London. Anyone else applied or previously applied? Currently in the waiting game.
  16. I just got an email from the financial aid office at a school I am waitlisted at, stating I have a financial aid package. I haven't gotten an acceptance letter yet, but is it safe to assume I'll be accepted off the waitllist? It just seems like a waste of time to put together financial aid packages for people who haven't been accepted yet? Has anyone experienced this, if so did you end up getting in off the waitlist shortly after getting the financial aid email?
  17. Hello everyone, I hope you're all well. I am asking if anyone has anymore information on where to seek financial aid for the MDes in Real Estate and the Built Environment at Harvard's Graduate School of Design (GSD)? I have recently been admitted but unfortunately have not received any aid. It is my top choice school so I'd hate to see it slip out of my hands for lack of financial aid. I am African, Canadian & Female.
  18. Hey everyone! I have been accepted to both NYU and UChicago so far, and am wondering if I could have insight as far as the areas the schools are located in, and their programs! I am also waiting to hear back from Columbia, and am submitting my UPenn app soon. I have visited both NY and Chicago very recently, but of course the tourist perspective is different than the resident perspective. There are several pros and cons for each of my acceptances thus far, however the pros and cons of each don't quite overlap (in my opinion). NYU: Lots of familial/peer support, program seems more focused on my direct interests, tons of things to do in the area, gave my $17,000 a year UChicago: Rank, not as much familial support, gave me $25,900 a year, beautiful city with a lot to do, not as expensive. As I mentioned, I am still waiting from Columbia, however I know a few people who were accepted last school year who received full tuition scholarships, so I'm hopeful that I'd get some sort of money from them too? As you all can tell, I am at a weird crossroads, so I'd appreciate any feedback! Thank you you all so much!!
  19. I'm about to start my PhD in Clinical Psychology in NYC at Yeshiva University (Ferkauf health emphasis program) in the fall and I'm a little worried about finances. I haven't heard back from the school about funding yet, but I'm under the impression they don't usually provide much of it. Since I'm not eligible for FAFSA, I'm wondering about other available funding opportunities for international students studying in New York (i.e. bursaries, fellowships, scholarships, loans, grants, etc.). I've looked into a few scholarships, but most of the deadlines have already passed. I will apply to these in the upcoming years, but I would love to hear about what other students in my position have done to fund their studies. It would be particularly AMAZING if anyone from the Ferkauf health emphasis program could provide me with some insight about funding opportunities for international students in that program. Any advice would be greatly appreciated-- thanks in advance
  20. Hey y'all! I just recently got the recent of my scholarship package from UChicago, and I just have some questions about cost of living and tuition. I know that whenever I college posts its overall tuition, it is more of an average estimate. With that being said I received $25,900 in scholarships, $4,860 for Work Study, $20,000 in unsub loans, and $27,769 in gradplus loan. I obviously do not intend on taking out all of those loans, but I also am not as afraid of taking out loans as most people are. Do y'all think that these are good numbers to have as far as funding is concerned? Also I figured, that some of the money could go towards housing (hence why I'm down for taking out some loans at least for my first year so I can get situated) Just trying to make some informed decisions about college lmfao. Thanks y'all!
  21. Okay so I’m trying not to be too excited but I just receieved a full financial aid package (loans and grant) from my top school, but I didn’t receive an admissions letter!! I’m even able to accept or reject the finaid offer. Does this mean I am admitted??
  22. Hey, can anyone who got in to Simmons tell me how they notified you about your financial aid? I applied on the priority deadline of 1/20. Around Feb. 13th, I think, I got a letter saying I needed to complete their financial aid form (not the FAFSA, which I'd already done back in January) before an admission decision could be made, so I did that. I've been told that they send out scholarship info with the admissions packet. I've also been told that it will be mailed to me later this month. Someone else on this forum said that the info was emailed to them. I guess I'm just wondering what the heck is going on. I tried to call the admissions office to find out, but they put me through to the director of admissions and he sounded like he was in a real hurry so I didn't push it. Any insight would be much appreciated. I've pretty much made myself sick worrying about this. Edit: Forgot to mention I got my acceptance letter on February 23rd.
  23. I'm about to start my PhD in Clinical Psychology in NYC at Yeshiva University (Ferkauf health emphasis program) in the fall and I'm a little worried about finances. I haven't heard back from the school about funding yet, but I'm under the impression they don't usually provide much of it. Since I'm not eligible for FAFSA, I'm wondering about other available funding opportunities for international students studying in New York (i.e. bursaries, fellowships, scholarships, loans, grants, etc.). I've looked into a few scholarships, but most of the deadlines have already passed. I will apply to these in the upcoming years, but I would love to hear about what other students in my position have done to fund their studies. It would be particularly AMAZING if anyone from the Ferkauf health emphasis program could provide me with some insight about funding opportunities for international students in that program. Any advice would be greatly appreciated-- thanks in advance
  24. I'm about to start my PhD in Clinical Psychology in NYC at Yeshiva University (Ferkauf health emphasis program) and I'm a little worried about finances. I haven't heard back from the school about funding yet, but I'm under the impression they don't usually provide much funding. Since I'm not eligible for FAFSA, I'm wondering about other available funding opportunities for international students studying in New York (i.e. bursaries, fellowships, scholarships, loans, grants, etc.). I've looked into a few scholarships, but most of the deadlines have already passed. I will apply to these in the upcoming years, but I would love to hear about what other students in my position have done to fund their studies. It would be particularly AMAZING if anyone from the Ferkauf health emphasis program could provide me with some insight about funding opportunities for international students in that program. Any advice would be greatly appreciated-- thanks in advance
  25. I was admitted to a masters program two weeks ago (the program doesn't admit directly to PhD if you come from a bachelor's degree). So far, the school is offering to reimburse expenses for the visit day, which is coming up this week, but I still haven't heard about financial aid. Is it appropriate to ask if I'm even being considered? When I first asked about visit day reimbursements (1 week ago), I was told funds were reserved for students being considered for financial aid and that they were still figuring things out, but the response was very generic and I didn't get the feeling that the program coordinator was suggesting that I wasn't being considered. Funding for the masters program at this school is really competitive (only around 25% of the admitted MS class receives any funding at all) and their website says decisions are made by the end of March. Is it too early for me to ask? Also, do programs typically send out emails along the lines of "we know you indicated need for financial aid on your application, but unfortunately you have not been awarded any scholarships" without you asking directly? If anyone has a template for asking about financial aid, that would be incredibly helpful.
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