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Found 52 results

  1. 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!
  2. 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.
  3. somewhatslightlydazed

    SIPA vs SAIS

    Hi all - hoping for some advice on choosing between SIPA's MIA program and SAIS's MA program. I'm interested in studying human rights and conflict prevention/resolution and I'm hoping to work in an advocacy-based NGO after finishing grad school (though I'm also interested in multilateral work or possibly federal gov work under a different administration). I've visited both schools and overall had great impressions of both, so I'm not sure how to make a final decision. My current pro-con list is below, but I'd love to hear others' thoughts on what I should put the most weight on or if there are other factors I should be considering! Pro-SAIS: I'd get to spend my first year living in Bologna and traveling through Europe and North Africa during breaks, which seems like a really amazing, unique opportunity More tight-knit cohort from spending a year abroad together SAIS seems more prestigious than SIPA, though perhaps only marginally I live in DC now and probably want to continue working here long-term, so having a mostly DC-based network would be useful Their program is smaller than SIPA's and the classes seem smaller in general Pro-SIPA: I got scholarships from both schools, but SIPA will be about $10k cheaper/year* (but I can still afford either with no debt) Being close to the UN and having school connections there would be a great way for me to get internship experience in a multilateral org and figure out if I like the sector Studying in NYC for 2 years would be a great way for me to test out living in the city and see if it's somewhere I'd be interested in living long-term (since most jobs that interest me are in DC or NYC, and I already know what I like and don't like about DC life) Their "human rights and humanitarian policy" concentration perfectly aligns with my career goals (I can study human rights at SAIS, it would just be under the "international law and orgs" concentration so it might be a bit less focused) I could cross-register with Columbia Law School and take courses in international law *Assuming I get the FLAS fellowship, which I find out about next week. If I don't get it, I can't afford SIPA and in that case the decision is easy! Thanks for sharing any thoughts you have 😃
  4. Indian_2019

    SAIS MIPP

    Hi, I have an admit from the MIPP program at SAIS with negligible funding. I just wanted some feedback for the program. Is the program recognised, is there scope for a non-US citizen to get employment in the US post this program? Since it's a 9 month program, is the length of the program enough for one to learn? Feedback, advice and help here would be highly appreciated. PS: I am also awaiting results from the MPP program at HKS and LKY
  5. So I've searched the entirety of this site and have yet to find any details or thoughts about the Masters in Global Policy (MAGP) that Johns Hopkins SAIS offers, does anyone know anything about the reputation of this program? I'm a working professional in DC and due to family commitments would really like to keep my current private sector job and not be a full-time student while finally pursuing the higher level international affairs degree that I've been seeking to for some time. After some time, I’m finally getting around to deciding to pursue the Master’s I’ve wanted to as I wouldn’t mind opening more career options in due time, hence looking at different part time options. I'm eventually looking gradually for a career pivot into more economic policy type roles in DC and so curious if this degree would even help towards that. When comparing MAGP to the Master of International Public Policy (MIPP) which is a one year full time program, I notice the curriculum seems to be less quantitative though in nature, so is this program similar to other executive MPAs (thinking such as Columbia SIPA) that’s more of a rubberstamp of a Master’s degree credential within their org rather than for any sort of career boost externally or at any policy orgs? For what it's worth, even though the other grad programs have had employment results posted in the most recent 2017 SAIS employment outcomes survey, MAGP did not, any thoughts as to why this program would've been excluded?
  6. I applied for early notification for SAIS Europe and received my acceptance letter right before the holidays. However, I still haven’t received notification about financial aid, and my letter didn’t give me a deadline to accept the offer. A current student told me that SAIS doesn’t send out notifications until March, but some apparently have already received their financial aid packages with an acceptance deadline. Has anyone been accepted and is still waiting to hear from the financial aid office?
  7. Hi everyone, I know admissions decisions are still a long ways away, but I thought it could be helpful to discuss the comparative merits of these great IR and public policy programs. I applied to HKS's MPP, Columbia's MIA, Georgetown's MSFS, WWS's MPA, and SAIS's MA. I also applied to Georgetown's Security Studies Program, but am leaning away from the latter now because of high tuition costs and rumored lack of aid. How do you feel these schools compare to one another, in terms of job prospects, curriculum/course offerings, school culture, academic rigor, faculty? Which would be your dream program and why?
  8. Hi! I got accepted to the following programs (all one year) and I can't decide! 1. Master of Arts (MA), The Fletcher School, Tufts University 2. Master of International Public Policy (MIPP), SAIS, Johns Hopkins University 3. Master of Advanced Studies in International Affairs (MAS-IA), GPS, UCSD 4. MSc International Strategy and Diplomacy, LSE My interests are IR, strategy, and security. When I consider location, I think UCSD is attractive but Fletcher and SAIS network are strong! LSE also has a very good program. I don't have to worry about scholarships because my workplace is going to pay for them. I would appreciate if I could get some advice!
  9. zarigüeya

    SAIS Employment Outcomes

    I got a full tuition scholarship at SAIS, which has me very close to accepting my offer there. My only hesitation is that right now I don't see myself in a job related to finance/trade/banking or even economics in general. I freaked myself out a little after comparing the "Employment Outcomes" sheet for SAIS with the sheet from Georgetown and seeing a lot more financial institutions for SAIS grads. I also have a contact who works on security issues at the State Department who told me that most SAIS grads at State work in Economic and Business Affairs or as Econ Desk Officers in the Political Bureau rather than on other issues. I went to the open house last week where they made the case that you need to have a grasp on economics to fully understand any issue in international relations, which I think I buy to a certain extent. Is SAIS still a strong program for people interested in issues (security, human rights, etc) that are not directly related to economics? At present I have been offered much more funding from SAIS than Georgetown so I think it is probably worth sacrificing a bit of "fit" for a significant cost difference, but I also want to make sure that I am not limiting myself to one type of work. Any insight on this would be very appreciated!
  10. Hi guys, I have been accepted to the MA program at Johns Hopkins SAIS, the MIA program at UCSD School of Global Policy and Strategy and the MGA program at Munk School of Global Affairs. I have read tons of info about these programs and I have attended the Open House events at SAIS and UCSD. However, I am still undecided. What do you think is the best program in terms of employability and education considering that I am an international student who wants to find a job in North America? My area of specialization is international economics and I would like to work in consulting/think-tanks/business/banks. Thanks!!
  11. Hi guys, first time posting. I got accepted into Johns Hopkins SAIS (Conflict Management) and Georgetown (M.A. in Conflict Resolution from the Department of Government). I'm having some trouble deciding between the programs. GU is giving me a partial scholarship (10K-ish) while SAIS offered no funding for this academic year. The reply deadline for GU is 4/15 and SAIS is 5/01. I'm looking to pursue a policy career in international relations (State Dept. U.N. etc.), and am also concerned about career prospects after grad school. I also understand that SAIS places an emphasis on economics, and I haven't taken too many econ courses in undergrad. If anyone is already in one of the programs/can speak from experience, your feedback would also be greatly appreciated! Some professors and family have recommended Georgetown b/c they also have a Ph.D. program, but I'm honestly not sure if I want to pursue a Ph.D. at this time. I was also accepted into the University of Pittsburgh's GSPIA, and was wondering if I should consider that over the Georgetown MA (GU's program is relatively new; first cohort was in 2005-06). I also spoke to a career counselor and he recommended SAIS for diplomacy/international affairs. Any additional insight/advice would be greatly appreciated!
  12. Hi guys, first time posting. I got accepted into Johns Hopkins SAIS and Georgetown (M.A. in Conflict Resolution from the Department of Government). I'm having some trouble deciding between the programs. GU is giving me a partial scholarship (10K-ish) while SAIS offered no funding for this academic year. The reply deadline for GU is 4/15 and SAIS is 5/01. I'm looking to pursue a policy career in international relations (State Dept. U.N. etc.), and am also concerned about career prospects after grad school.If anyone is already in one of the programs/can speak from experience, your feedback would also be greatly appreciated! Some professors and family have recommended Georgetown b/c they also have a Ph.D. program, but I'm honestly not sure if I want to pursue a Ph.D. at this time. I also spoke to a career counselor and he recommended SAIS for diplomacy/international affairs. Any additional insight/advice would be greatly appreciated!
  13. Hello all, I got accepted to the following programs and would highly appreciate your help on deciding. I studied Political Science with the focus on Public Policy and worked around Sustainable Development in the land-use sector in an international organization for 3 years. Am considering PhD also, but this might change depending on the masters program I choose. Below are key traits of each school from my point of view: 1. Master of Environmental Management (MEM), Forestry and Environmental Studies, Yale Pro: Strongest school in Env. management Con: .... Network is not as widespread as SAIS or SIPA in international organizations? 2. Master of Arts (MA), SAIS, Johns Hopkins University Pro: Strong network Con: Not very focused on Env. topics 3. Master of Public Affairs (MPA), SIPA, Columbia Pro: Strong network; practice orieted curriculum Con: Program is not intended for tentative phd applicants 4. Master of Development Studies (MDP), UC Berkeley Pro: Location, Flexible & practice oriented curriculum Con: Program is not intended for tentative phd applicants (no doctoral program available within the department) 5. Master of Science in Public Policy and Management (MSPPM), Heinz School, Carnegie Mellon University Pro: Program wise, most inclined to this school as the course is highly technical (data science/analytics for public policy), providing a niche in my field. Received $40,000 funding offer for 2 years (conditional - GPA higher than 3.0/4.0 per semester). Con: Not as famous as above schools; location Thanks for your insight in advance.
  14. I've been in my field (marketing automation / marketing analytics / customer database management) for nearly a decade and have found it to be fairly lucrative and in demand, but have always been interested in someday working as an analyst for one of the agencies in the intelligence community (NSA, NGA, CIA, DIA). I applied to SAIS and Elliott this cycle and got into both, but got no funding from either. I'll also note that I've applied to both schools several years ago, but turned both down since I wasn't completely certain on how I'd use the degree. Given the lack of funding, I'm planning to enroll in Elliott since it'd allow me to continue at my current job, which would enable me to pay for school virtually out of pocket. After graduating with nearly $90k in undergrad and spending most of my 20s repaying student loans (only 8k left!), I REALLY don't want to take on more debt, especially given that post-grad Fed salaries start around GS-9. My goal with grad school is to apply for summer internships at one of the agencies after my second year and hopefully land a job as a Fed after my third year. If all else fails and I don't get a federal or contractor job, I plan to go back into my current field...not ideal, but also not terrible either. I'm fully aware that I'd be taking a significant pay cut by switching careers, but figure that's just the reality of making a career change. Does my plan seem at all sensible? Any other recommendations on getting an analyst job with an intelligence agency without joining the military?
  15. apricots

    Johns Hopkins SAIS 2017

    I'm sitting here unable to focus on anything waiting for Friday evening to come. Figured I'd start a thread for other anxious applicants out there! So far I've been accepted to GWU, Texas MGPS DC, and Korbel all with varying amounts of funding but SAIS Bologna is my number 1 choice.
  16. HEY GUYS!!!!!! I THOUGHT IT MAYBE HELPFUL IF I STARTED A THREAD ON IR SCHOOL APPLICATIONS I personally applied for the Early decision FOR FLETCHER THERE ARE COUPLE OTHERS I WILL APPLY AS REGULAR DECISION, we could all wait it out together discuss and so on. SINCE WE ARE ALL NERVOUS. If you have applied or planning to apply for regular decision you are welcome too!! ALSO YOU ARE WELCOME TO DISCUSS ANY OTHER IR SCHOOLS THAT YOU APPLIED OR PLANNING TO APPLY!!!!! WE COULD ALL JUST BE SUPPORTIVE AND INFORMATIVE TO ONE ANOTHER HERE!!! GOOD LUCK GUYS!!!!!
  17. I got accepted to Berkeley’s Master of Development Practice and Johns Hopkins’ SAIS DC. I graduated from UC Berkeley in 2015 with a degree in Environmental Economics and Policy. Though I haven’t had relevant professional work experience, I attended community college meanwhile to take classes for my own interest. Berkeley’s tuition is about $48k/year and offers small funding ($3k/year) while SAIS DC’s tuition is about $47k/year with no funding. Cost of living in DC and SF bay area are similar. I know UC Berkeley very well and it seems like I may have some advantage getting campus jobs that I may be able to graduate debt-free. While these two programs are not exactly the same, they will help my career goal, which is to work in international organizations focusing on Latin America in the long-run. Here are pros and cons I see from each school: Berkeley Pros: Campus jobs that will help me financially Bigger campus, more departments such as ERG and Latin American studies Fellowship opportunities for the second year Cons: I spent 4 years there. I am not sure if there’s much I can get out of this school. But Berkeley is a big school and being a graduate student is different from undergrad. So I’m not sure if it’s a big con. SAIS: Pros: Being in DC SAIS is more known and prestigious than MDP. Emphasis on quant skills Cons: I have no clue how I can minimize student loan (or if possible at all). What do you think? I would like to get some advice from others.
  18. I am trying to gauge admissions outcomes for the upcoming admissions cycle for MA programs in international development and affairs. If you could, please include the following information in your response: GPA: GRE (Verbal/Math/Writing) Applied: Accepted: Rejected: Waitlist: description of relevant work experience and other factors: Thank you!
  19. Yo everyone - hope you're all well, So I'm looking into getting a dual MIA-MBA degree. I basically want to get involved in international business strategy - Evaluating foreign markets, expansion, best approaches, etc. And I'm thinking that a dual MIA-MBA would be perfect. Despite the massive debt, I'd be a unique candidate - the MBA would give me solid business acumen while the MIA would help me hone my language skills and solidify my theoretical knowledge of the world economy. Now I've only got a couple years of work experience, which is a little on the low side for bschool , but given the 3 year timeline I feel like I should go for it sooner than later. I've looked at a bunch of MBA programs and I've been looking at a lot of the top MIA programs (Gtown, SAIS, HKS, Princeton, SIPA, etc.). Anyway, there is some flexibility in my plan and I'm basically wondering the following: Should I apply to both MBA and MIA programs (At Colombia, Gtown, SAIS/Tuck, Texas, etc) now or, Should I apply to MIA now (less competitive admissions process), then when I'm one year in, apply to the bschool. Anyone know if this has worked for people? Would you have a better shot of getting in given that you're already enrolled at the university? I like the idea of breaking up the application process, plus even if I didn't get in to the MBA program, it would always be an option to do the two-year MIA and then a one-year MBA afterwards too. I'm also happy to hear any thoughts/insights on my plan,the MIA in general, the MBA,or the schools I mentioned. Thanks!
  20. I thought the waiting period was the most torturing, it turned out the decision time is no less tougher. I'm having a tough time deciding between SAIS (International Development - IDEV) and Cornell's CIPA (MPA - International Development/ Social Policy concentration). I'm actually accepted into SIPA (MPA) as well but without any funding offer, so this makes it impossible to me to even consider SIPA as a choice. I am, therefore, down to these two-- CIPA and SAIS. They offer me equally generous fundings so money is not the deciding factor here. I know SAIS seems like an obvious choice as its reputation in this field is almost second to none. It's also located in DC while I'll be rather far removed from action if I choose to go to Cornell. In short, here are my personal pros/cons of these two programs: SAIS Pros: - Well-regarded in the field. - Well-structured program (IDEV) with rigorous quantitative focus. - Good networking/internship opportunities in DC. - Strong alumni network-- the SAIS alums in my country just organized a welcoming event for the admitted students a week ago. SAIS alumni relations coordinated and made this happen in different countries around the world. I was really impressed. There were A LOT of alums turning up and they seemed to really have been keeping very well in touch. SAIS Cons: - Johns Hopkins is not as well known as Cornell in my country (I'm an international student on a Fulbright fellowship; I have to come back to work in my country for around 2 years after graduation). - As my undergraduate major was English, I have a very weak economics background and will be required to take online Principles to Economics course + Intermediate Microeconomics pre-term before the semester starts. I need to pass B- for both courses to be able to officially join IDEV. I know that I'm going to be putting my best effort in completing these two courses, but what if something happens and I don't get a B- plus? Would appreciate some insights from any SAIS students/alums here. - Very few courses on education development is offered. (I plan to focus on education development as my policy specialization). - No campus life. (But maybe DC can be my campus in this case? lol) CIPA Pros: - The MPA program at CIPA is unique in that it offers high flexibility to self-customize my own study experience. This means I can take courses across colleges and schools in Cornell to make sure I get the skills in the area I need. And of course, more courses on education are offered. - Beautiful campus; access to resources of the university. - I do not have to fulfill any additional requirements before matriculation. CIPA Cons: - Ithaca is beautiful but it's so far removed from action and this can affect internship/networking opportunities. I also consider myself a city girl-- not in terms of partying or nightlife--but I very much enjoy the city life. So I'm not sure if Ithaca would be too secluded in this case. - The program is less known in the field. - Too much flexibility in course selection can be a problem as well. - I only know/heard of a few alums in my country so far. Thank you for reading this until here. It's longer than I expected but I just wanted to make sure my predicament is clear enough for you guys to give me some useful advice.
  21. Hi everyone - currently snowed in here in DC and running out of things to do on the Internet, so I figured I'd fire up my ole gradschoolcafe account! I graduated from SAIS last spring after having spent my first year in Bologna. I did an AMA in 2014 when I was still in Italy (linked below), and and figured I'd drop in to see if the current any of you current applicants had questions you'd like to ask. So...feel free to ask me anything!
  22. Hello all, I'm going to add to the chaos this decision-making season. I have been accepted to the strategic studies program at SAIS DC with no funding, GWs Security Policy Studies Program with 7k a year, and Korbel's International Security program with 20k a year. I already live in Denver, and I know that Security is one of Korbel's top programs. But, will I be at a disadvantage if I am not in DC? I know Korbel offers the Global Security Program in DC for second year students, but it is highly competitive. Also, GW allows for two concentrations, the second of which for me would be development. I know a lot of people will say follow the money, but it's hard to turn down an opportunity like SAIS or Elliott. Also, has anyone tried appealing for more funding to any of these schools? I know it's unlikely with SAIS, but if Elliott and Korbel were aware of my acceptance to SAIS, is there even the slightest chance of receiving more funding? I've heard there's no harm in asking, but I would like some advice. Congrats to all who got in and good luck!
  23. Hi everyone! I've recently received admissions notifications for grad school and decided to turn to The Grad Cafe for help and/or input in deciding which school I should attend. Hopefully i get some feedback soon, considering the deadline is on April 15! Anyway, a little background on myself. I am a 23 year old female person from Malaysia. Got my Bachelor's in International Relations from Boston University (Class of 2015) and am currently working as a researcher at a foreign policy think tank in my country. Hoping to go back to grad school this Fall 2017. I applied to all IR MA programs, 6 in total, and all 6 accepted me. The 6 schools and programs are: Columbia SIPA (MIA) Johns Hopkins SAIS (MA) University of Denver Josef Korbel School (MA in Intl Human Rights) George Washington Elliott School (MA in Global Communication) UT Austin LBJ School (MGPS) Tufts Fletcher (MALD) I honestly did not expect to get into all 6 programs, which is why I am having trouble deciding. I've created an Excel spreadsheet to look over all the relevant details in order to help me make the best choice but what do you guys think are the programs I should give more weight to? All of the programs i've applied to are of the international human rights/humanitarian policy with a global communications/public service/policy orientation. I like these programs because they are all interdisciplinary and most emphasize on practical applications of knowledge rather than theoretical. For example, rather than complete an MA thesis, some of these programs require Capstones or practical internships instead. My weaknesses are economics and numbers. Some of these schools have also offered me scholarships/fellowships - the only two who haven't are SIPA and SAIS. What i'm taking into consideration when picking schools/programs are mainly cost of attendance, scholarship/fellowship offered, reputation/ranking and cost of living (since i'm guessing i'd most probably have to live off campus, self housing). Prior to receiving admissions notices, I had my own personal choice ranking but now, some of it has shifted. For example, NYC cost of living alone is a number that i am not sure I would be able to afford (let alone cost of attendance of 80k per year) so Columbia has moved down slightly on my list. I am going to apply to government scholarships from my country that would cover cost of living etc, everything total but the problem is i have to make a commitment to a school soon and scholarships here generally have 3-4 rounds of interviews so it might not work out in my favor soon enough. That's pretty much the basic gist of it! Looking forward to any and all input, opinions, first hand knowledge and experiences that you guys can offer!
  24. Hey guys, I am having an issue that really is bothering me and I can't make my decision. I have been admitted to Fletcher, SAIS and Elliot and I'm completely stuck with my decision on which school to attend. I have received very little funding and will likely go into heavy debt with all three schools, yet thats another topic by itself. I simply cannot make a decision about which program to attend and have read, and reread the programs over and over again, yet I simply can't make up my mind. I am intending to step into foreign affairs after graduation and I currently am an undergraduate student who's going to grad school straight out. Thus, my experience is very limited. I also studied Finance as an Undergrad and so that has very little to do, non actually, with International affairs and Foreign Service per say, so idk, my head is spinning and I just don't really know anymore... The positives for SAIS in my point of view are the program, reputation and location, although I am a little worried about the Econ. and quant part. As far as elliot, it's pretty much the same, the location, program and reputation. Fletcher on the hand had me hooked with their program, especially since I am stepping into foreign affairs, and the program seems to be tailored towards international affairs /foreign service. Yet the downside with Fletcher is the location. I would much rather be in DC, especially since I would love to work there someday. I would love your inputs on this with me guys, I really am anxious that I might make the wrong decision and have been running back and forth with this over and over again. As far as attending open house this April, I don't think I will be able to attend all three, since its quite expensive and I live in the west coast. I really appreciate this and thanks for helping me out.
  25. Harrisite

    SAIS vs Chicago CIR

    Hey all, Just got accepted to both SAIS and CIR for a masters in IR. 1/3 funding at Chicago, nothing at SAIS. I'm willing to go pretty deep in debt for either, though. Too shocked that I got into either to think clearly about my choice right now, so I could use some input: I know that for policy focused programs, SAIS is near unbeatable. However, I think I'm more interested in research/academia for a career, and I want to know which program would set me up better if I choose to go for a Phd. I'm also interested in working for a FoPo think tank like the Atlantic Council or Brookings. I'm attracted to Chicago because I enjoy the theoretical side of IR and that seems to be their focus (also, Mearsheimer). However, SAIS is better ranked as an MA program (although that's for "policy programs"), and I feel like I could keep my options open career wise. Any insights? Also, before someone says CIR "isn't worth it" for future Phd, I'm coming from a no name undergrad school with no work experience. I seriously doubt my chances getting into a top tier Phd program direct from UG, or getting an even halfway decent job given the low name recognition of my UG institution, which is why I want a big name MA.
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