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I am applying to a variety of Master of Public Admin. (MPA) programs for Fall of 2012. I've been out of undergrad for over 3 years and have worked full time for two different health related nonprofits (I would like to emphasize in health administration). I'm having a difficult time constructing an SoP that doesn't come off as too cheesey/corney when explaining my desire to work in the nonprofit field and especially health (as I have worked with many chronically ill adults and children, managing an array of free health programming). But this is my passion and I want to make that very clear without just repeating what's already on my resume. I'm a little unsure on how to begin and have been putting off this very daunting writing task.

Any suggestions from people who have written SoPs for MPA programs and other nonprofit/public sector degree programs? Thanks!

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  • 2 weeks later...


I would like an answer to this too if anyone has suggestions, especially on how to and what to pick from your resume to highlight. I keep hearing how the SOP should not be like a resume aka don't list everything you did...so how do you pick what is important? For MPA/MPP degrees, how much is too much in being personal in the essay?

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While I'm not applying for MPPs/MPAs, a number of friends are and have recently and the ones who have been successful constructed a narrative that makes sense for what they have done and what they want to do. So the OP's SOP would discuss what he/she has done with healthcare while tying this into a personal narrative with a good catch to start and end (personal anecdote of some kind). Then also make sure to tie it into something you want to do moving forward as well (e.g. I want to use what I've done plus this MPA to do X,Y,Z when I graduate). If you combine all three of those approaches, then you shouldn't do too much personal or resume but a bit of both.

Hope that helps...

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