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Hey everyone,

I was admitted to SPEA MSES, with the intent to study applied ecology and wildlife conservation. While I know the MPA program to be highly regarded, I don't actually know too much about the MSES department's reputation itself. Is this degree valued without the MPA component? Not that selectivity is the best metric, but I can't seem to find that information either. Does anyone know how many students are admitted to MSES and how many apply?

I've also considered adding on the MPA once enrolled, so does anyone have experience with/info about adding the MPA mid-program?

Thanks very much!

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I don't know much about the standalone MSES, but I remember reading a post here somewhere along the lines of SPEA getting most of its reputation from MPA (at least at the masters level). And there are these posts from the Environmental Studies 2011 thread:

On July 13, 2011 at 10:51 AM, surprisecake said:

Indiana couldn't even fill their MSES incoming class this year! I don't know what the hell happened there.

On July 13, 2011 at 11:44 AM, cunninlynguist said:

That's crazy, and a little sad, about Indiana, but it makes some sense. Their MPA program is reputable, as is the MPA/MSES. Qualified applicants who want a sufficient emphasis in science should just opt for the MPA/MSES. And apparently they have! Regardless, that's a bit worrisome - I've considered dropping them from my list anyway.

Granted those posts were a while ago and things may have changed on the MSES front. 

I'm not sure the process, but I wouldn't add an MPA unless you're actually interested in going into the policy/public affairs side of ecology and wildlife conservation. I'm sure the MSES is a strong program, but if you're also interested in ranking and reputation then I imagine there are other programs that are known specifically for ecology and wildlife conservation.

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