Jump to content

Deciding on an MPP Program


Recommended Posts

Hello All,

I have recently been admitted to the University of Denver (CO) and American University (DC) MA Public Policy programs.

I am currently an undergraduate at UDenver, and as a Public Policy major, I have become very familiar with the program, faculty (same profs do undergrad and grad courses), university, and city of Denver. I believe UDenver has given me a solid foundation in policy, and I am confident that I would continue receive a great education if I stay at UDenver for my MPP. I also have friends and a social life here in Denver, and it would be hard to leave that for the unknown of Washington DC. In addition, the DU program is cheaper and has smaller class sizes than AmericanU, and the city of Denver has the second most federal jobs in the country (DC is first obviously). I also already have a place to live lined up if I stay in Denver, and know how to get around the city well. I was offered an $8,000 scholarship to UDenver as well, and have yet to recieve aid from AmericanU.

However, AmericanU is in DC, the USA hub of policy opportunities, and would offer access to DC that UDenver probably would have trouble accomplishing. Also, I have a brother who is an undergrad at AmericanU, so even though I do not have friends in DC like I do in Denver, I would be closer to family than in Denver. AmericanU's MPP program is ranked higher and is more well-known than UDenver, but I do not know what to expect as far as the quality and difficulty of the program -- which I can predict at UDenver because of my experience there. Also, I am a bit concerned about the commute from AmericanU to downtown DC where my internship or job would likely be located. I know the metro is great, but I'm not sure if want a 30-45 minute one-way commute to work every day. It would also be more expensive in terms of tuition and living expenses versus UDenver.

Basically, I am weighing the certainty and familiarity of UDenver versus the prestige and opportunities but unfamiliarity of UAmerican. Please help me weigh and consider these two options, any advice or info on either program would be helpful.

Sorry for the length, I have been thinking very deeply about this for a few days. Thank you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Seems that you've already decided, but don't want to tell yourself what you really feel! :P

As far as prestige, I would guess American is slightly higher in the food chain, but ultimately this is a decision predicated as much by how comfortable you'll feel. If you get to D.C. and struggle to attach yourself to the lifestyle and academic shift, you may in fact struggle. That's no bueno in regards to furthering yourself.

It boils down to your goals. In looking at what you had to say in your other thread, it seems that D.C. is more conducive to accomplishing what you want. You say that Denver has the second most federal jobs, but are these the types of jobs you picture yourself pursuing? American would most def give you the leg up, but you'll only benefit if you're willing to get out there and take advantage of your location.

No one can make the decision for you, but it seems you would be most happy at U Denver...given what you've provided.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.