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hammyc

Environmental Management and Policy 2019

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Hey folks, UM SEAS first year master's student here. If anyone has any questions about the program or life in Ann Arbor, let me know, I'd love to help!

During my round of applications, I applied to mostly public policy programs at Duke, Berkeley, UWashington, etc. along with a few environmental programs (Yale, UM, Wisconsin). I'm in climate policy & justice. I'm also well acquainted with Durham/the triangle area (I'm from a couple hours north of there and my best friend lives outside Chapel Hill), went to admitted students day there, and can speak a little bit to culture, etc. between various places. I got into Duke with a scholarship and my choice was between there and UM – I am very glad I made the decision I did.

The funding structure is a little strange at UM, so I can also explain that if anyone is interested.

Good luck to you all with your decisions: given the schools you all have applied to, you cannot make a bad choice.

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1 hour ago, TheOfficeFan said:

Hey folks, UM SEAS first year master's student here. If anyone has any questions about the program or life in Ann Arbor, let me know, I'd love to help!

During my round of applications, I applied to mostly public policy programs at Duke, Berkeley, UWashington, etc. along with a few environmental programs (Yale, UM, Wisconsin). I'm in climate policy & justice. I'm also well acquainted with Durham/the triangle area (I'm from a couple hours north of there and my best friend lives outside Chapel Hill), went to admitted students day there, and can speak a little bit to culture, etc. between various places. I got into Duke with a scholarship and my choice was between there and UM – I am very glad I made the decision I did.

The funding structure is a little strange at UM, so I can also explain that if anyone is interested.

Good luck to you all with your decisions: given the schools you all have applied to, you cannot make a bad choice.

Yes, would love to know the funding structure. I have an admit at UM SEAS as well (Sustainable System) along with Yale and Duke MEM. While I am waiting on the funding for both Yale and Duke - nothing from SEAS. Couple of faculty members did email me about  my admit (along with the official Rackham and SEAS email) but nothing on funding. How does it work?

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15 hours ago, TheOfficeFan said:

Hey folks, UM SEAS first year master's student here. If anyone has any questions about the program or life in Ann Arbor, let me know, I'd love to help!

During my round of applications, I applied to mostly public policy programs at Duke, Berkeley, UWashington, etc. along with a few environmental programs (Yale, UM, Wisconsin). I'm in climate policy & justice. I'm also well acquainted with Durham/the triangle area (I'm from a couple hours north of there and my best friend lives outside Chapel Hill), went to admitted students day there, and can speak a little bit to culture, etc. between various places. I got into Duke with a scholarship and my choice was between there and UM – I am very glad I made the decision I did.

The funding structure is a little strange at UM, so I can also explain that if anyone is interested.

Good luck to you all with your decisions: given the schools you all have applied to, you cannot make a bad choice.

Would love to hear more about the funding structure at SEAS! I attended an offline meeting with an admissions officer from SEAS and he said people didn't get funding info in the acceptance letters can lobby professors during campus visit -- funding decisions will not settle until campus visit. 

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Has anyone received any financial aid information from Duke or UCSB yet ?

Edited by Geo4

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On 3/13/2019 at 11:47 AM, AWAW said:

Would love to hear more about the funding structure at SEAS! I attended an offline meeting with an admissions officer from SEAS and he said people didn't get funding info in the acceptance letters can lobby professors during campus visit -- funding decisions will not settle until campus visit. 

Thats good to know because I'm an out of state student and didn't receive any funding from Michigan which is a bummer. It's definitely a top choice. Is anyone waiting to hear from Bren still? 

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I just received an update on Yale's financial support. I got a need-based scholarship of 20000 usd per year but I'm a little bit confused if this indicates I did not receive any merit-based scholarships?

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On 3/13/2019 at 12:46 AM, hardikpokhrel said:

Yes, would love to know the funding structure. I have an admit at UM SEAS as well (Sustainable System) along with Yale and Duke MEM. While I am waiting on the funding for both Yale and Duke - nothing from SEAS. Couple of faculty members did email me about  my admit (along with the official Rackham and SEAS email) but nothing on funding. How does it work?

Hey there! So the way the funding structure works is that SEAS usually gives you anywhere from nothing to a little at the time of admission (I got $15k when admitted and that was the max I heard of). I even called them after my Duke scholarship offer and tried to talk them into giving me more money/matching Duke to no avail.

Once enrolled, SEAS heavily relies on research assistant/teaching assistant positions to act as sources of tuition remission – you establish relationships with professors, they give you research/TA gigs, and it works that way. If that sounds like a lot of schools, that's because it is, but the critical difference is that Michigan's positions are usually full tuition remission + benefits + salary. Super lucrative. They are either 5, 10, 15, or 20 hours per week (expected work load), with most being between 10-20, and above 10 hours gives you full tuition remission.

I ended up visiting Michigan after admitted students day and was able to set up a meeting with my advisor (who I had mentioned as someone I wanted to work with in my application essay); the meeting went very, very well, and at the end of it she said she had two research positions that were offered to incoming students who hadn't yet responded. When one of them fell through, she offered it to me, and the decision to attend Michigan with the prospect of a full ride was way too good to pass up.

I will say this: very few first semester students get these positions ahead of time (I got really lucky), so the little bit of up-front money is meant to soften the blow of the first semester. Second semester first years vie pretty hard for them, so it's not assured, but by your second year you should be able to secure a position for both semesters. 

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3 hours ago, TheOfficeFan said:

Hey there! So the way the funding structure works is that SEAS usually gives you anywhere from nothing to a little at the time of admission (I got $15k when admitted and that was the max I heard of). I even called them after my Duke scholarship offer and tried to talk them into giving me more money/matching Duke to no avail.

Once enrolled, SEAS heavily relies on research assistant/teaching assistant positions to act as sources of tuition remission – you establish relationships with professors, they give you research/TA gigs, and it works that way. If that sounds like a lot of schools, that's because it is, but the critical difference is that Michigan's positions are usually full tuition remission + benefits + salary. Super lucrative. They are either 5, 10, 15, or 20 hours per week (expected work load), with most being between 10-20, and above 10 hours gives you full tuition remission.

I ended up visiting Michigan after admitted students day and was able to set up a meeting with my advisor (who I had mentioned as someone I wanted to work with in my application essay); the meeting went very, very well, and at the end of it she said she had two research positions that were offered to incoming students who hadn't yet responded. When one of them fell through, she offered it to me, and the decision to attend Michigan with the prospect of a full ride was way too good to pass up.

I will say this: very few first semester students get these positions ahead of time (I got really lucky), so the little bit of up-front money is meant to soften the blow of the first semester. Second semester first years vie pretty hard for them, so it's not assured, but by your second year you should be able to secure a position for both semesters. 

I got just financial aid from Yale and its 28,000 per year with eligibility to Work study. Vs the potential chance to cover full. Tuition in Michigan. What would be better? Yale aid is super generous. Don't want to let it go but haven't heard positive things abt the specialisation there. Yet to hear from Duke

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16 minutes ago, hardikpokhrel said:

I got just financial aid from Yale and its 28,000 per year with eligibility to Work study. Vs the potential chance to cover full. Tuition in Michigan. What would be better? Yale aid is super generous. Don't want to let it go but haven't heard positive things abt the specialisation there. Yet to hear from Duke

It depends on how much stock you put in the Yale name and whether you think you'll fit in there. I might not be the best person to ask: I ended up throwing an application at Yale F&ES and didn't get, probably because I was a horrible fit for the program – politically, I simply do not align with Ivies. I was looking for the most radical and progressive environmental education I could find, which was why I chose SEAS – it's one of the only programs in the country with an Environmental Justice concentration. I was 50/50 on Duke vs. SEAS, and after visiting Duke it was an immediate no – I found it traditionalist, no challenge of current economic structures, few justice or equity conversations, etc. I expect Yale would be similar given its endowment and prestigiousness, though I don't know. All I know is that I wouldn't have been a good fit there.

You're not me, so you might not care about those things. I will say most of my friends are in the Sustainable Systems track here and they all love it. Lots of people are at SEAS for things like "creative" corporate sustainability work – we have lots of opportunities for project-based work/fellowships with companies around here like Ford and DOW. Again, that's not at all my thing, but people flock to SEAS for it.

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3 hours ago, TheOfficeFan said:

It depends on how much stock you put in the Yale name and whether you think you'll fit in there. I might not be the best person to ask: I ended up throwing an application at Yale F&ES and didn't get, probably because I was a horrible fit for the program – politically, I simply do not align with Ivies. I was looking for the most radical and progressive environmental education I could find, which was why I chose SEAS – it's one of the only programs in the country with an Environmental Justice concentration. I was 50/50 on Duke vs. SEAS, and after visiting Duke it was an immediate no – I found it traditionalist, no challenge of current economic structures, few justice or equity conversations, etc. I expect Yale would be similar given its endowment and prestigiousness, though I don't know. All I know is that I wouldn't have been a good fit there.

You're not me, so you might not care about those things. I will say most of my friends are in the Sustainable Systems track here and they all love it. Lots of people are at SEAS for things like "creative" corporate sustainability work – we have lots of opportunities for project-based work/fellowships with companies around here like Ford and DOW. Again, that's not at all my thing, but people flock to SEAS for it.

After looking at the curriculum on the prospective students page the Environmental Justice program seems very broad. I can't quite figure out what the goals of the program are. If you don't mind, what are your goals after graduating and if you can, what are some of the things people in your cohort want to do? 

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Hi everyone! I can't believe I hadn't discovered this site earlier (just found it this week). I also applied to Duke MEM and UM SEAS priority deadline on December 15th. I'm a candidate for Duke MEM Ecosystem Science & Conservation and UM SEAS Conservation Ecology, and received a 30k fellowship for SEAS. I'm excitedly and anxiously waiting for Duke's scholarship notification. I think it's supposed to come out today, so I've been on the edge of my seat. I'll be going to SEAS Admitted Day next week (March 22) and half of Duke's Admitted Weekend (probably March 30 only), so excited to meet you all and talk about graduate school options!

Edited by pibblepot

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Duke's funding info is out. I received an offer of $10,000 for my first year, that is renewable for the second year with good academic standing. Can't say I'm not slightly disappointed. I was hoping for it to be a little higher.

Did anyone else get funding info?

Edited by hammyc

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1 hour ago, pibblepot said:

Hi everyone! I can't believe I hadn't discovered this site earlier (just found it this week). I also applied to Duke MEM and UM SEAS priority deadline on December 15th. I'm a candidate for Duke MEM Ecosystem Science & Conservation and UM SEAS Conservation Ecology, and received a 30k fellowship for SEAS. I'm excitedly and anxiously waiting for Duke's scholarship notification. I think it's supposed to come out today, so I've been on the edge of my seat. I'll be going to SEAS Admitted Day next week (March 22) and half of Duke's Admitted Weekend (probably March 30 only), so excited to meet you all and talk about graduate school options!

I just received Duke's scholarship notification this morning! I got 56,000 scholarship per year but I'll probably turn it down for Yale...

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17 minutes ago, QL1998 said:

I just received Duke's scholarship notification this morning! I got 56,000 scholarship per year but I'll probably turn it down for Yale...

Wow 56000 is massive. Congrats 

I too got the mail just now and have been given 10k. So probably will turn down for Yale (30k)

Any particular strong reason for turning down 56k for 20k by Yale as you had mentioned earlier 

Edited by SC88

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@QL1998 @SC88 

Yup, congratulations to you both! Actually, I also got 10k from Duke and feeling kind of disappointed since I had been waiting for so long. Though this is 10k for each year, right? That would be 20k for the entire time I'm there compared to the 30k for the first year at UM SEAS. Also, I hadn't received any information in that email about any research assistant opportunities, and they mentioned in the admissions decision that select students would be chosen for that. 

Also, referencing your previous comment @hikarusymphony, about the assistantships for $3000 a year that can be converted to a scholarship for the second year - how many hours/week do they typically work? Should I be concerned that they hadn't mentioned any assistantships in my scholarship email? You mentioned that you have options to find these jobs on campus but are they compensated in the same way? UM SEAS provides opportunities for GSI (graduate student instructor) and GSRA (graduate student research assistant) where if you get these jobs it literally covers the entire tuition for the semester. Do you have any insights on how this might compare to a job at Duke helping out with a lot of the tuition or is it usually just minimal? 

Edited by pibblepot

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Still waiting on aid notification from Duke when did you guys get yours? I know I have about a 7k scholarship for being an AmeriCorps member but I'm curious to see what else they'll give me...

Edited by sara501

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1 hour ago, sara501 said:

Still waiting on aid notification from Duke when did you guys get yours? I know I have about a 7k scholarship for being an AmeriCorps member but I'm curious to see what else they'll give me...

I too am still waiting on financial aid information from Duke. And am wondering if they were all sent out around the same time (and therefore did not receive any aid) or if they are still sending out as we speak. 

Edited by Geo4

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Got my info about at hour ago, they're giving me 34k for each year. I was hoping for an assistantship , but it's okay. I'm still waiting to hear back from Bren on financial aid.

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9 hours ago, sara501 said:

Got my info about at hour ago, they're giving me 34k for each year. I was hoping for an assistantship , but it's okay. I'm still waiting to hear back from Bren on financial aid.

Congrats to everyone. I got 28k from Yale and 30k from Duke. Feels like have to make a hard decision here for energy specialisation. 

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11 hours ago, QL1998 said:

I just received Duke's scholarship notification this morning! I got 56,000 scholarship per year but I'll probably turn it down for Yale...

Wow. 56k. That's huge. What's your reasoning behind choosing yale against Duke? 

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10 hours ago, hardikpokhrel said:

Wow. 56k. That's huge. What's your reasoning behind choosing yale against Duke? 

Mostly because Yale has been my dream school for a long time and its reputation. But I have heard a lot of positive things from Duke alumni about their career planning and all my profs suggested Duke (with the funding) might be a better option... 

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Hello everyone!

Congrats on your admits :)

I got into Duke's MEM ($20K scholarship), Columbia's MPA-ESP (with $48K scholarship) and got wait-listed for Yale. I'm a Fulbright scholar, so would really like to know if any of you have an idea on the conversion of a waitlist to an admit at Yale.

I am planning to specialize in water resources management and was really looking forward to join Yale's program but I might have to pick between Duke and Columbia now.

I know Columbia is more generally oriented towards policy, but can anybody tell me what is the scope of learning the sciences aspect of water resource management at Columbia because I'm fully funded for this university?

A general comparison of MPA-ESP vs MEM from the employability angle will be great!

 

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On 3/15/2019 at 2:35 AM, kenton said:

After looking at the curriculum on the prospective students page the Environmental Justice program seems very broad. I can't quite figure out what the goals of the program are. If you don't mind, what are your goals after graduating and if you can, what are some of the things people in your cohort want to do? 

It's helpful to note that Environmental Justice as an academic field is very young – the first real academic articles/reports started in the late 80s, and though the amount of EJ scholarship has greatly increased over the last two decades or so, there is still a *lot* of development to be done. A lot of subsets of the EJ field – say, Energy Justice – have really only become an academic "thing" in the past decade or so. In some ways, the broadness you're describing is reflective of the development of the field.

That said, the Environmental Justice concentration at SEAS is usually paired with another concentration – I am pairing it with Environmental Policy and Planning. Those of us who are really passionate about EJ argue that there aren't enough classes offered in it, which is the reason why it's so often paired with something else, and probably the reason why it's the smallest concentration at SEAS (I'm pretty sure). We also argue – quite rightly, I think – that EJ is too siloed as a concept in environmental education, including at SEAS. In an era of climate change, justice is something that should run through everything we do in the environmental arena. A lot of folks in other environmental fields take umbrage at that idea, but climate change really has rewritten the needs of the future of the environmental movement in a broad and complete way.

Anyway, most EJ concentrations go into work at EJ and/or policy organizations, so non-profits/NGOs usually. The dual concentration ability provides some flexibility and depth to your resume, and having a Justice perspective to the work you want to do is always going to be helpful (and more and more desired/applicable, IMO). If you asked me my dream job, it would be as an environmental policy advisor to an elected official, helping craft macro-scale social/environmental policy like the Green New Deal. I came into grad school wanting to position myself to be part of future radical (or commensurate, depending on your viewpoint) solutions to climate change. I'm more confident than ever that I did so at the right time.

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Hi 

Can anyone explain the 5% fee in the Yale International Loan column. 

Does it indicate a loan processing fee (e.g. On a 10k loan, 500 might be the fee) or is it an addition to the the interest rate (7.75 + 5)

Screenshot_20190315_235143_com.android.chrome.jpg

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27 minutes ago, SC88 said:

Hi 

Can anyone explain the 5% fee in the Yale International Loan column. 

Does it indicate a loan processing fee (e.g. On a 10k loan, 500 might be the fee) or is it an addition to the the interest rate (7.75 + 5)

Screenshot_20190315_235143_com.android.chrome.jpg

In my view, 5% is a one time processing fee. 

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