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SAIS vs Georgetown


alloy
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Hi, 

 

I was accepted both to SAIS (MA) and Georgetown MSPP (MPP) and I am still waiting for decision from SIPA. I was applying staight from undergrad (though I have extensive part-time work experience) and I would like to focus on energy policy.

 

Most probably I do not need to worry about fellowships. Therefore, I would simply like to know which program is the best ;)

 

I will be grateful for your input ;)

Edited by alloy
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Alloy - I'm currently in a similar position in deciding between SAIS and MSPP (MIDP though) and waiting on SIPA. The one thing that really helped in my decision (or at least where I think I'm going in they take me off the funding waitlist) was talking to the academic director of the program. Foreign Policy ranks SFS above SAIS for IR and US News doesn't even rank SAIS but those rankings don't matter much (to a lot of people including myself) as long as the program is a solid fit regarding exactly what you want to do. They're both excellent schools, which you already know or you wouldn't have applied. I suggest you try to talk to the academic director, ask questions about what graduates from the program go on to do, and about the program itself - whether or not it focuses on exactly what you want.

Congrats on the acceptances, though! Maybe see you in the fall!

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Hi,

Actually I care a lot about name recognition, because I am aiming at coming back to my country. Therefore, I would be nice if my degree would be recognized as a good one internationally.

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Alloy, between SAIS and Georgetown it's difficult to say, if you care about international name recognition. Because frankly I think neither are that well-known internationally. It's hard, because those are the two of the best IR programs, but outside the US people only know a handful of the best US universities and usually they have no idea what programs are good at which schools. (Case in point: I went to an Ivy that isn't Harvard or Columbia for undergrad and now live in France. No one has heard of my school.) Of the three you mentioned, Columbia imo is by far the best well-known. I've noticed for example that in Europe Columbia tends to be even better known and considered a better school than Yale or Princeton (in general, not just for IR). That goes to show how fickle the whole name-recognition issue is. I think it's sad though to just pick Columbia based on that factor alone, because SAIS and Georgetown might be better programs for you. But I understand why you want to take that into account if you want to work outside the US after your master's. I've been thinking about the same thing.

Edited by Ruella76
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