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Syracuse Maxwell MPA vs CMU Heinz MSPPM

Maxwell MPA vs Heinz MSPPM  

2 members have voted

  1. 1. Maxwell MPA vs Heinz MSPPM

    • Maxwell MPA
    • Heinz MSPPM

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Hi everyone,

I have a bit of a head scratcher here. I have just been offered two opportunities about attending two amazing masters programs, and would love to have some external input. Below are my offers:

Carnegie-Mellon Heinz Masters of Science in Public Policy and Management (MSPPM): 2 year program with 50% tuition scholarship (about $50,000 total)

Syracuse Maxwell Masters in Public Administration (MPA): 1 year program with $38,000 merit scholarship, graduate assistantship where I will be compensated $15,800, and a $5,000 transition stipend for each each summer I attend (about $58,000 total)

I love the Heinz program because it is quant/programming based, and will provide many "hard" skills that I would want to be putting towards my public service career. I love the Maxwell program because it offers me an opportunity to work as a researcher while pursuing my degree, and will ultimately push me "up" towards my goal of a Ph.D in policy rather than "out" into the job market. My ultimate goal is to work in policy for a few years before returning to school to pursue a doctorate in policy. The focus of a future Ph. D would be to work in the industry (think tank, non-profit, governmental agency) before transitioning into academia as I get older. 

Any feedback would be great, and feel free to fill out the poll! Thanks!

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I'm in at Heinz and it's on my short list vs some non-quant schools as well, so I feel your pain.


If your goal is to get a Ph.D, and I'll admit, I have limited knowledge, both schools will help you. Heinz will teach you hard data analysis skill which I'd imagine will benefit your research. Syracuse will give you experience, and most importantly a reference when you apply next time. I think that is more important than the programming skills, so this non-Ph.D noob says Syracuse

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