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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

 

 

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Yeah I just got the no-invite for the FSOA so this is my next deadline. There's a lot I want to rework for this year's app (including another GRE retake) so I need to hit the ground running to prepare.

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On 5/3/2019 at 12:57 AM, ayasofaya said:

Yeah I just got the no-invite for the FSOA so this is my next deadline. There's a lot I want to rework for this year's app (including another GRE retake) so I need to hit the ground running to prepare.

What are you aiming for the GRE scores? I took mine for a second time and got a 163V 155Q I am not sure how much weight is given to the writing score but mine actually went down the second time :(

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I got 162V 156Q so we're basically twins! I have an unrelated undergrad major/work experience and a decent GPA at best (4.45) so my aim is to try to take the things I can still control and make them as top tier as I can. I know I can score 320+ I just have to actually do it lol. I got into half the schools I applied for last time around, so there is the relief of knowing it's at least good enough for a few top programs, but there are other goals I could be working toward (and more funding for the programs I know I can at least be admitted).

All of this means nothing if I don't get the fellowships this year, because then the plan is to follow Ye Olde "Do what you would be doing if the Foreign Service didn't exist," which means getting an MBA. 

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Just a few pieces of advice/my opinions: your grades GPA and gre scores are not that important for the fellowship so don't put so much emphasis on it. I know some people want certain things for the grad school program but for the fellowship it's more about your experiences and crafting them into a well written essay. If I were you I would spend more time on the application essays and reaching out to mentors early to help you vs spending more time and money on the GRE UNLESS you wanted a certain score for a program in case the fellowships didn't work out. Again take it with a grain of salt just my opinions. 

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Hi, all! 😁

m7752ne is absolutely correct. From everything that I've read online and from conversations with DIR's and my university's grant advisor, the single most important factor is the quality of writing in your application. Apparently there are many candidates that have stellar backgrounds who "should" be a shoe-in, but who can't write very well. This was pretty surprising information to learn. 

Anyway, you select your grad school after you've been offered one of the fellowships. Most of the time universities don't really care about your GPA or GRE scores because they're concerned with the prestige of hosting Rangel and Pickering fellows. A girl from my university was offered a Rangel fellowship last year and she had a cumulative 3.2 GPA. Once the official acceptance list was released, Harvard kept bugging her to the point where she completed an application just so they would stop harassing her! Many universities offer extra stipends to entice fellows to select them. I was told the only reason that a fellow even needs to take the GRE is because it's a traditional requirement for grad school admittance, and that the universities honestly don't look too closely at it.

Rest assured, if you are a lucky recipient of a fellowship, you don't have to worry much about GPA or GRE. Your energy would be much better spent focusing on your writing within the application and preparing for your oral interview. 

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Pickering fellow here and I would just like to add that GPA and GRE score do actually matter for applying to graduate school. Having the fellowship does not make you a shoo-in for programs, especially at highly-competitive schools/programs. While it is a welcome addition, it is not something that will make a program automatically select you over an equally-qualified candidate who isn't a fellow. Also, keep in mind that the fellowships do not cover all of the financial costs of attending most schools and only a few partner programs offer to cover the difference. You will need competitive GPA and GRE scores to secure the rest of the funding. Good luck!

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