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Is there a huge benefit in applying to Columbia SIPA Early Action?

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I am working on my apps for MPP programs, and I'm kicking myself for trying to get through to the SIPA program early action. One of my recommenders likely won't be able to get her information submitted in time due to significant travels on her side. 

And now I'm even considering retaking the GRE (312 score -- 153V/159Q) as I'm getting nervous about my scores being too low. Is there a significant advantage in applying early action or is it best to wait until your app is in the best shape possible? I've been debating asking another mentor to rush and submit a rec instead, but now I'm just considering holding back and re-working things all together instead of rushing everything.

Thoughts? Also very curious on any feedback regarding my GRE score for top MPP programs...it's giving me nightmares :(

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Hey @worldleader2018, I'm in the same boat. I'll be applying to both SIPA and SAIS and both have early notification deadlines of 1 Nov. I wanted to try rushing for it but I was busy prepping for my GRE and with work. I just decided that I'm going to drop the rush to make early notification, to ensure my application is as strong as possible. I think that's the best decision for me at the moment. Good luck in making your decision!

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