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  1. As the application season has begun, I felt we should have a thread for prospective applicants for MIA/MPA and other Graduate programs at SIPA (commencing in Fall 2021). We can discuss application related stuff and other other relevant topics here.
  2. Hello Everyone! I am hoping to get some thoughts on a few grad programs I have been admitted to for International Affairs / Human Rights. I would so appreciate any insights people have! Money is a huge factor. I graduated undergrad with no debt, and have about 30k in savings, but I know I don't want to take on a ton of debt since non-profit work isn't particularly lucrative. I also assume about 12k / year will be needed for housing. My options: -Fletcher / Tufts, MGA ($9k scholarship) full program cost is ~80k -BU Pardee, MAIA ($24k scholarship - waiting to find out about a full tuition FLAS scholarship) full program cost is ~105k -Middlebury Institute, MIPD ($40k scholarship) full program cost is ~85k - University of Minnesota, MA Human Rights (waiting on FA offer) -Korbel School, MA Intl Human Rights ($16k scholarship) -IHEID, MA in Development Studies (no scholarship) full program cost is only ~18k Waiting on McGill and Northeastern. I was wondering what people have heard about the MGA program at Fletcher? I know it is a first-year program, but at the moment it is my top choice. It is much more affordable than the MALD (although still SO expensive) and allows you to focus deeply on one specialization rather than studying 2 specializations less in-depth. I applied to the program as a full-time student, but am hoping to switch my status to part-time to make it more financially viable. I am slightly nervous about one aspect, which is that parts of Fletcher's alumni community publicly posted about their outrage of the creation of the MGA program, as they saw it as "cheapening" their MALD degrees. I see it as expanding accessibility, but I'm not sure how this could impact my relationships / job prospects with the alumni community, which is one of Fletcher's big draws. Finally, does anyone have any advice on appealing financial aid offers? I really love fletcher, but I don't know if its worth taking out a 50k loan for this program, if I'm not able to work part-time throughout. Thank you so much for any insights you have!
  3. I know there are a bunch of posts like this, but I am trying to decide between the Global Human Development program at Georgetown SFS and the International Development Studies program at the GW Elliott School. I received scholarships from both, but Georgetown would be about $35k more. I love the GHD program and its community, but it's hard to choose over a much cheaper option. Georgetown seems to be more prestigious and rigorous, but is it worth it in the long run? Any insights are appreciated, thanks!
  4. First off, I am so sorry for how long this post is. I wanted to be as thorough as possible, and I hope this shows how frustrated I am. I was accepted to five wonderful programs, and have ultimately narrowed it down to two programs, but I am struggling to determine which offer to accept. The first program (GWU) is the one my parents really want me to go to, as it's closer to home (Atlanta), and although this school was one of my top choices, I feel like if I chose to go there I would regret my decision. In the same vein, I feel like if I chose University of Washington, I would be missing out on some great opportunities. I made a huge spreadsheet comparing program costs and general stuff about each school, but I'm still stuck. Like I said, my family (parents and grandparents [my grandma is a borderline narcissist, so take that as you will]) want me to stay closer to home and attend GWU, but for the past year or so I have been fantasizing about attending UW. UW comes out as more expensive than GWU, but my family has also told me that I am not just paying for a program, but for the experience as well. In short, money is a factor, but it is not the factor. My main concern about GWU is the fact that I have to pass a foreign language proficiency exam in order to graduate, and if I fail it so many times (I think it's 2 or 3) I can get kicked from the program. I was fairly confident in my Japanese ability until I had to get a language evaluation from my professor, and he basically told me I suck but he knows I'm trying which is why I'm passing his class. I am worried that being a full-time student plus working will not allow me adequate time to improve my language ability enough to pass this exam (for reference—I have to be "intermediate-high" to pass the exam, and my professor rated me as "intermediate-low, but actually beginner-high but I know you are trying"). Additionally, UW is pretty much the school I have had my eyes on since I began my grad school search. My area concentration is Japan, and I love that they have a specific program for that, whereas GWU just has a generalized Asian Studies program. I have a friend who is a couple of years older than me who at one point considered pursuing a Japan-related degree, and she told me that she would choose UW due to the resources pertinent to my program (plus she thinks I would like UW better in general). Either way, no matter which program I choose, I will probably end up working in D.C., which is partially why I am drawn to UW—I might not get the chance to live in Seattle unless I decide to go to school there. GWU Pros ~10 hours by car from home; <2 hours by plane Received a small fellowship (a couple thousand a semester) Program director personally emailed me to congratulate me on my acceptance Wide variety of job opportunities available in this area—however, might not be what I want specifically Parents have many friends who live in the area Mildly familiar with the area (have visited D.C. a couple of times) Semester system Cons Have to pass a foreign language exam Program is more generalized Will not have a car with me (very urban location, most apartments have $100+/month parking fee) UW Pros Program is more concentrated Do not have to pass a foreign language exam, but encouraged to take FL classes (which I plan on doing) Can have my car with me (most of the apartments I have looked at have parking included) Has a specific library for my concentration (Tateuchi East Asia Library) Home of the Journal of Japanese Studies (I think it's super cool that this is the institution where this publication is published!) I have one acquaintance who lives in the area Several friends have encouraged me to choose UW Cons Far away from home (opposite side of the country, ~2 days by car, >5 hours by plane) Didn't receive any fellowships Really haven't heard much from the program other than the generic "congrats on your acceptance" Completely unfamiliar with the area Quarter system Stuff both schools have in common Accredited by the same organization (APSIA) Selected as an alternate for a fellowship at both schools Cost of living is roughly the same in both areas (slightly higher for GWU) Both schools are prestigious Both schools have hosted numerous conferences for my field Unfortunately, UW is part of the April 15 cohort, while I have until May 1 to decide on GWU. I was selected as an alternate for a fellowship (tuition + living stipend) at each school, but I will not be notified if I become a recipient of either until after April 15, of course. I have also applied to several small scholarships at UW that are specific to my program, and plan to apply to as many external scholarships as I can no matter which school I end up choosing. I am absolutely torn between both programs, and I would love some advice.
  5. Hello All! I have read many insightful posts on the topic of IR grad programs and was hoping we could revisit for 2021? My options: -SAIS ($2k/year scholarship) -GW - Security Policy Studies Program ($14k/year scholarship) -Fletcher ($15k/year scholarship) (Shoutouts: American ($15k/year sch) and Texas A&M (significantly the cheapest option) I want to study Gender, Peace, and Security with a regional focus in the Middle East. I’m interested in working for the State Department or an international agency. Everyone is pushing me towards Johns Hopkins (despite the hefty bill) because of the name recognition/connections in DC. Does anyone have a say either way? As a female POC, I’m excited to study this topic but want to make sure I’m embarking in a program that has a supportive community, not just a luxe school name.
  6. Hi folks, For a Masters in international affairs and/or security - which program do you feel is best? I've been working as a program officer at an international peace organization for the past two years, and have recently finished up a BA in political science with a 3.94 GPA. I speak French, English, and Spanish, so language isn't an issue in terms of the francophone community in Geneva (I did my undergrad in French). I'm looking at applying to these schools in the fall of 2021 or 2022, depending on how the pandemic is, and will be working in my current role until then and as a research associate at a security-oriented think-tank in South Asia. The reason I'm putting the question forward is because of jobs and employability within the peace/conflict studies world - Geneva is widely regarded as the centre of the peacemaking world. London and DC obviously have some great opportunities as well, and a great name. I've heard that DC has a lot of jobs but the competition is cutthroat and often times you're stuck with a position you're overqualified for - not sure how true this is, but it scared me. What do you folks think? How do the namesakes of the schools weigh out, and where is best for someone looking to work in peacebuilding and/or security spaces, and not necessarily as a government analyst? TIA!
  7. Hey guys! I'm currently considering these three schools and programs and would love some insight: Master's in Global Policy Studies at UT Austin Master of Arts in Arab Studies at Georgetown University International Policy and Development at Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey Just a couple notes: Location isn't super important. I know the argument for a lot of East Coast and big name schools is that they're ideal for networking and opportunities. However, I do have a job lined up post-grad that will be in DC, so the need to network and be in the heart of everything IR isn't as strong. My thoughts: While I already know that the LBJ School and Georgetown have fantastic programs, I was more drawn to Middlebury in terms of smaller class sizes, their focus on language and faculty seem to really promote the idea of decolonizing the international policy and development field and diversifying perspectives. While living in an active city like Austin is a pro for me, the fact that UT Austin is known for being a typical party school for undergrads makes it a little less appealing. While I might've enjoyed that experience as an undergrad, I'm a little less thrilled as a potential grad student -- especially since the undergrad presence is quite large compared to the number of grad students on campus. I really like Georgetown as an institution, but my cons are that I've heard from peers that the atmosphere can be super cutthroat and unforgiving. I've managed to escape that toxicity during undergrad and I don't willingly want to waltz right into it. My other con is that that it's in DC. Since my career is set in stone to be in DC, I wanted to take this time to explore a different part of the US. I went to undergrad on the East Coast too and I just wanted a different experience for grad school. If any of you know anything about these schools or specifics on these three programs, I'd love to hear your thoughts and experiences. To be honest, I am leaning towards Middlebury at the moment but the fact that there isn't too much out there about the school and students' experiences does concern me a bit -- in addition to the city of Monterey being a slow beach town that's insanely expensive. Tuition isn't a factor for these schools, but the cost of living is. If y'all were me, which one would you choose and/or which one would you cross off your list immediately?
  8. Decided to start a thread for those of us applying to Canadian international affairs programs this fall/winter. Post stats, advice, or anything related to this topic!
  9. I want to do a joint JD-MA Int'l Affairs but I want to go to NPSIA but not Ottawa Common law (lol) so I'm thinking of doing NPSIA 2021-2022 then go elsewhere for law. I noticed that one need 5.0 credits (10 one semester courses) to finish without co-op. Can this be done in one semester? Is it a bad idea to try and take that many classes at once? Any advice is great
  10. Hey everyone, I have been admitted into the Graduate school of public and international affairs at Uottawa, and the Masters in Public Policy and Public Administration at Carleton University. I am not exactly sure which school offers better job placement (heard carleton might be stronger with COOP), and also how reputation plays a factor. I personally am interested in International Affairs, but after hearing that Uottawa has a french requirement for one of its courses and that only the top 20% of the class gets a COOP placement, it has really made me rethink what is the best choice moving forward. I aspire to work for GAC or an NGO so i'm not sure if having an MPPA will help me or not! Any advice?
  11. Hello! Haven't seen any other threads about Canadian applicants for international affairs grad programs. I have applied to Balsillie (BSIA) PhD and am waiting to hear back!
  12. Hello everyone, I have to applied to international affairs schools and have been admitted to SAIS, Fletcher, Syracuse-Maxwell and GPS at UCSD. Academically I prefer 1) SAIS 2) Fletcher 3) Maxwell and finally UCSD, since I consider it is too far away from the cities I want to be closed to like Boston, NYC and DC. However, I am an international student from argentina and my funding options are limited. I have been granted a 54 k scholarship at SAIS, 64k at Fletcher and full tuition at Maxwell and UCSD. Enrolling in SAIS or Fletcher would imply taking student debt for at least 30 k and maybe even 50 k or 60 k. The problem is that being an international student, I am not sure if I will be able to stay and work in the US to repay my loan. What are your thoughts on the matter? which should I take the risk?
  13. Hi all, I've been accepted to the MSc in Global Affairs at the SPS in NYU. Super excited and happy when I got the offer. I love NY and living there has been a dream of mine so I'm very inclined to accept the offer. My goal is also to work in policy analysis and/or counter-terrorism/violent extremism in a think tank, NGO, international organization etc. But my concerns are: 1) the cost: I'll have to take a loan of $80k-100k to cover tuition, living expenses + everything. BIG deal. 2) I'd want to stay in the US to work. What would my chances be to find work in NY or anywhere in the US as a Canadian citizen with a Master's from NYU? I've spoken to 2 alumni's from the program who went from Canada and one is working in NY and the other in Washington. Any advice would be appreciated
  14. Can anyone help out with a qualitative comparison of the two programmes? I've been accepted to both, but I know for sure that I will have to take up a substantial student loan in order to study at Fletcher. I was wondering if it would be worth it, or if I could gain a similar/better experience and job opportunities (minus a loan) at the Graduate Institute, Geneva? Also was wondering how much branding matters. Everyone around me seems to think that Fletcher is quite the name to have tagged to your CV, but don't seem to really think similarly about the Graduate Institute. Would love to hear some thoughts about this! Thanks!
  15. Starting a thread for those hearing/waiting to hear back as it seems decisions are starting to roll in.
  16. Hi everyone, I'm having a lot of difficulty deciding between the Master of Arts Globalization and International Development (SIDGS) and Master of Arts Public and International Affairs (GSPIA) at uOttawa. SIDGS has offered me a far greater scholarship while GSPIA has offered me a scholarship, but much lower. Should I be basing my decision on scholarship? I haven't done as much research into SIDGS as I'd have liked to, but on the surface level, I'm having difficulties identifying the differences between what SIDGS and GSPIA offer (aside from GSPIA's faculty and internship program, I know they are also more widely known, but in terms of courses or subject matter, I don't really know what the real differences are). I'm hoping for any advice in picking between these two programs! Thanks so much in advance.
  17. Hello, I was looking around for information on these two fellowships and didn't see any threads for this year. I will be super busy from July to September so I thought I might as well get started early. Here are links to previous year's threads: 2018-2019 2017-2019
  18. I couldn't find a thread about GSPIA Fall 2019, so I figured I would start one.
  19. Currently admitted/ prospective or alumni of Evans, what has been your impression of Evans for MPA degree? The corses, career opportunities? I am highly interested in policy making/analysis and I feel like Seattle is not an ideal place for that. So who reputed and prestigious is Evans name, would it help me in my job hunt? Please let me know about your impression and experiences in Evans. I have to decided between GPS, Harris (15k fuding ) and Evans and it is increasingly getting stressful! Thank you
  20. Hi all, who's going to Bolgona/DC this fall? What are your impressions on the program? My situation: US student, 4 years out from undergrad. €50,000 scholarship from SAIS Bologna campus for two years (MAIA). 2 years Fulbright ETA, short term PC service, internships at UN & Goethe Institut. GPA 3.8, GRE V 162/Q 158/W 5.5. Fluent in German/French, working knowledge Russian/Italian. Age 25. Did not have LOR's in place by the deadline last cycle to ship out a full array of applications. Rejected by LSE/pre-accepted to College of Europe. Uncertain if it's better to take the offer or wait and accept a position as a research coordinator at a top business school (HBS) for 1-2 years before trying for Wilson/Jackson or simply combining said coordinator experience with an MBA down the road (not my dream, but the moneys and security!!!!!!). A life in Europe/European Affairs/maintaining and improving my foreign languages is the dream, BUT I am not huge on quant/IMF/WB work and have gone back and forth on the prospects of entering the D.C. game. Also, this job at HBS just seems too good........... Insight??? Applied: SAIS (MAIA), LSE (Msc International Political Economy), College of Europe (MA EU Diplomacy) Results: SAIS Bologna ($$), LSE Msc, CoE MA (awaiting decision--generally no funding for 1 year program)
  21. Hi all, Somewhat new here. I'll try to keep this short. I've just been accepted to SAIS (MAIA/Bologna campus) with €25,000 funding per year which comes out to about a solid 50% scholarship. I've had my eyes on this program for years and have essentially been doing my best to keep my life and career in Europe (hence the European campus). I am fluent in German/French with intermediate Russian/Italian. The "problem" is that I'm not sure if I realistically have "better" options long term. Here's a quick look at my profile: GPA: 3.8/4.0 GRE: V: 162/Q: 158/W: 5.5 (I think I can realistically get up to 325 combined with preparation, although I've already taken the GRE twice...) In addition, back to back Fulbright ETA years (Germany/Austria), 1 year peace corps service (Eastern Europe), graduate level coursework in German (Middlebury) and--here's the kicker--a potential research/coordinator position at a top business school (first initial with "H" and includes "B" + "S"). While I was pumped to get my offer at SAIS, I'm feeling a bit of reserve in the event that an additional round of apps (undesirable) might produce offers at schools I simply did not have the time/LOR's in place to apply to this last cycle (i.e. SFS/Jackson). Complicated matters further is that my career plans have become a bit more fuzzy since undergrad. I'm definitely an "academic" at heart and feel somewhat ambivalent towards the Econ concentration at SAIS (I am not envisioning a career in consulting), however I'm not sure that additional acceptances even at Georgetown etc. would yield equal funding while simultaneously setting me back by an additional year (currently 25). Hope this isn't too much info. I'm really just trying to get more insight, so all input is welcome. Thanks!
  22. Hello everyone! I'm new here :) I signed up to check if there's anyone out there who applied for the 2018 NATO internship program. I applied in May and still haven't heard back. I hold a Master degree form LSE in London, and multiple internship experiences with the UN in NYC and with the European Commission in Brussels (Blue Book Traineeship). I'm now interning at OSCE Mission in Kosovo, in Pristina, and I will be here for the next 6 months. NATO recruiterds dn't know I am in Kosovo, because at the time of the application I didn't have the internship offer yet. I have close friends interning at NATO at the moment, and they told me the recruitment process is often slow, so I should not worry yet. Also, I haven't received any refusal email yet. Anyone out there still waiting? And what are the chances I will get it? Thanks! Cheers, Isma
  23. I’ve been struggling for weeks with the best choice, and would love some input. Choosing between: SIPA (68k), SAIS Europe (45k), ESIA (42.5k), MSFS (59k), SIS (still waiting on funding info) Criteria: alumni network, abundance of internship opportunities, cohort atmosphere, career services, location (preference for big cities) I’m also concerned about debt. After my savings I’m facing a loan somewhere between 40k and 60k depending on the school. How much debt is good debt for a MA in IR? While I would like to work in non-profit, I know it’s not finanacially smart. Therefore, I’m aiming for a career in consulting. At first I was 100% invested in SAIS Europe, and SAIS (according to most) has a pretty heavy Econ focus which I need for my professional goals. However, the locations of the NY and DC schools are really advantageous. I won’t have to deal with the summer rush to get internships and can have access to those opportunities during the fall and spring. I would say that MSFS is my second top choice, but the distance from the metro as well as overall cost of living in that area are a bit of a drawback. I’m going to try to ask for more funding. Just to see if I can get more and to make my decision easier. Im really unsure about which one I should go for.
  24. Hey all, I'm a current graduate student at Carleton University reading for an MA in international affairs (NPSIA). I'm enjoying the content of my studies immensely, but have more or less lost interest in leveraging my degree to work for the public service upon graduation. As NPSIA has a strong focus on placing students within the government, I realize that more schooling will likely be necessary to find employment elsewhere. I've been playing with the idea of pursuing a career in conflict/political journalism for some time now, and have heard good things about the Munk School's Fellowship in Global Journalism. It seems a practical course of study, with a strong focus on teaching fellows how to set themselves up for freelance careers. Given my education and interests, this sounds like an ideal fit for me. The issue lies in that most of the information that I've been able to dig up has been provided by the school itself - Obviously, U of T is going to be biased in promoting its own program to potential applicants. I was wondering whether or not anybody might have had some sort of experience with the program on these forums; I'd love to hear some anecdotes regarding the program's utility, and whether or not the sort of freelance work it purports to equip one for is a viable means of making a living in itself. If you've anything to say, I'd be extremely grateful to hear it. Likewise, if anybody has any questions for me, I'm happy to acquiesce as well. Cheers, Delidas
  25. I'm having a very hard time deciding where to study in Europe next year in international affairs. I've been accepted to Cambridge, LSE, Oxford, and Sciences Po but funding, course structure and reputation are weighing on me. I have a BA in International Development and 2 years of relevant work experience (co-op) in foreign policy. After graduate school, I would like to eventually work for the UN, an international organization or the foreign affairs department. Here are my initial thoughts: LSE - MSc IR: no funding, 1 full year, foundational course in IR + courses + 10,000 word dissertation. I have applied to a couple of external scholarships which could offset the higher cost of living, but have heard that it's more of a degree that looks good on paper. Cambridge - MPhil IR: no funding, 10 months, courses + methodology + 25,000 word dissertation. I really like the idea of living on a small campus, not far away from London. Having browsed internet forums I'm not sure about POLIS' reputation. Oxford - MPhil IR: no funding, 2 years, foundational courses, courses + methodology + 30,000 word dissertation. Probably my first choice but I don't have the means to spend 90k on tuition + living expenses for two years esp. given my likely income afterwards. Would I be making a huge mistake in rejecting the offer and going elsewhere? Sciences Po - Int. Security: Partial funding (20,000 euros), 2 years, internship, a ton of courses, already bilingual. i could afford to stay in Paris for two years with the scholarship and it would give me the opportunity to get some more work experience/internships during the summer and fall. Not too sure about the university's reputation and course structure since it seems like there are 8 classes per semester?? Right now, I'm leaning towards Cambridge given the length of the programme and the campus, but also very open to considering LSE or Sciences Po. Grateful for any opinions
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