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2 hours ago, sharma_enthusiast said:

I wish you the best and sincerely hope you qualify. I got the MPA, 1/3rd funding.

hey..congratulations to you!! can you provide me a little detail about you profile so that I may be able to gauge the weakness in mine and work upon them...also..have you applied / admitted to any other schools or Ford is your top choice??

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Did anyone actually get the chance to talk to students last night during the calling night? I wasn't able to chat with the person who called me and was hoping people might share any information they got. Thanks in advance!

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50 minutes ago, sturdyelm said:

Did anyone actually get the chance to talk to students last night during the calling night? I wasn't able to chat with the person who called me and was hoping people might share any information they got. Thanks in advance!

I got my call last night as well but I was away from my phone. I've been texting with them today and plan to talk soon. I'll let you know how the conversation goes.

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On 3/21/2017 at 11:03 AM, TheSenator said:

Who all is for sure attending Ford School? Who is attending Spring Preview?

I am for sure attending the Ford School, and I'll be at Spring Preview as well. I actually didn't get a call yet, at least not that I know of. Not sure if I should email them about it. Looking forward to meeting you guys in a few weeks though?

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I unfortunately won't be able to attend the Spring Preview, and not sure how much of an option Ford is for me. However, I did manage to email with the person who called me, and who gave me some tremendous answers. So I wanted to share some of the information (without giving them or myself away) in case others find it helpful:

  • Ford gives away a lot of money. Most people have a job working part-time on campus on initiatives or research programs that coincide with their policy interests. The Ford school hires graduate student instructors, tutors and graders for core classes (although most of these are 2nd year students. A GSI position pays a stipend as well as full tuition scholarship for the semester) and there are programs within Ford that hire students throughout the year for specific policy programs. There are also opportunities to work within other schools at UMich (suggested looking at Rackham and programs specific to your policy interests). 
  • If you already have a quant background, you should try to test out of the Calculus, Microeconomics A, and Statistics, this is difficult to do but not impossible. Ford offers a Math Camp during orientation week that you are encouraged to attend.
  • Ford holds alot of workshops and events, which are well-attended and most often worth going to but can be a bit of a time suck (something most people don't think about when considering time management and course load with student groups etc.)
  • It is strongly encouraged to join student groups.There are about 12-14 groups just within Ford that will be looking for new members in the fall and you have the option of how much time you want to give to them.
  • "Once you've said yes to your acceptance letter, you'll begin to get links and info from students and admin about which classes to take (in and out of Ford) and which ones were the most helpful depending on topic. That's one thing I truly love about Ford, we are not competitive with each other and therefore everyone is trying to find ways to help their fellow classmates."

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@sturdyelm Thanks for that info! I was called on Calling Night by a first year MPP student. I was rushing out for something, so the call was short. My caller alerted me to the existence of the Spring Preview, talked a bit about the possibility of getting a GSI position at Ford, promoted Ford for great courses and fun, and also offered to link me up with other dual MPP/MSW students (as I am seriously considering that route). We linked up via email where he offered to help answer any further questions. I think this Calling Night linkup is definitely a good opportunity to ask informal questions about Ford, so I would email them, @turkish coffee, to ask about it if you don't get a call soon.

@TheSenator @turkish coffee I'll definitely be at Spring Preview. If I'm taking an MPP at all, it'll be at Ford. Funding will be an issue though (as I'm considering taking this up with an MSW, or alternatively just taking an MPP or MSW alone) so I've still not 100% decided to commit to this. Let's see how funding and Spring Preview goes. :)

 

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@sturdyelm yes, thanks for providing all that! I do agree that Ford School has tons of money to give away. Not trying to influence anyone's decision one way or the other, but in terms of securing additional funding while actually in school, Michigan is probably one of your best bets.

@aaresident yeah I ended up e-mailing them today, we'll see what they say. I have a friend in MSW if you want me to get you in touch or pass along any q's, although you probably have been connected through the department directly. By the way, Umich allows you to apply for a dual degree during your first year, so you could enroll in one program and defer/reapply in another year?

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@sturdyelm - Really great info. Thank you for all of that.

@aaresident - That's awesome you're considering the joint degree route with a MSW. My significant other is currently at Columbia for her MSW and I think she's sort of regretting not applying to Michigan as I've raved about the school nonstop since September (and they have a really great MSW program).

@turkish coffee - I completely agree with your response to @sturdyelm. I found a couple of current Fordies via social media sleuthing and talked with them. They all said the same thing re: ton of money to give away after matriculation. While it may not be the most prudent choice to attend a school based on the chance of receiving non guaranteed funds, this appeared to be a somewhat common route to financing their tuition.

 

Also, The Ford School is the only school I applied to. I will be attending. I don't think I'll be able to make it to Spring Preview though (previous plans for that weekend involving airfare and hotel). I'll be anxious to hear all about it.

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Congrats to everyone who got in! It's a great program1

Edited by nebula

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On 3/24/2017 at 9:55 AM, TheSenator said:

Also, The Ford School is the only school I applied to. I will be attending. I don't think I'll be able to make it to Spring Preview though (previous plans for that weekend involving airfare and hotel). I'll be anxious to hear all about it.

1

@TheSenator  In that case, I'm looking forward to meeting you this September. Feel free to message me after the preview weekend if you want a detailed account of how it goes

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@turkish coffee Thank you very much for your offer! I've been accepted into the MSW already and know some current MSW students (just not any current dual MSW-MPP ones), so now it's a matter of deciding whether to take both up. I might actually take both up and hope to get funding within the program... Heh. See you at Spring Preview!

@TheSenator Sure, let us know if there's anything in particular you want us to suss out. :) 

Edited by aaresident

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Anyone know how Michigan responds to a request for more funding? I have $20k to both Chicago Harris and Duke Sanford and I am wondering if I can use those to leverage some funding to Ford. While it can't hurt (and yes, very apparent there is lots of funding potential once in the program), do they grant some/additional funding when people ask??

Thanks!

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20 hours ago, sdiaz1924 said:

@LizaBee they have a form you can fill out to request additional funding. They included it in one of the emails they sent out.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeaUwA0F3U3wkv4-D8lVmoiC27fZhMFWP6sLBAvRuP9bwBpVg/viewform

Thats the link to it. Hope it works. Best of luck!

Have people had success in actually getting additional funding?

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For those at Spring Preview this weekend, just a reminder to please give a recap when you get the chance for those who couldn't attend. Thanks! 

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Spring Preview was pretty informative and fun. I met a few students who said that they had been convinced by attending other previews, but were seriously considering Ford now. I myself have been pretty convinced to take up the MPP!

Key points I picked up:

1. Strong academic points of the school include :

  • (A) Ford's Writing Center with three Ford faculty hired to critique your policy-related writing through individual appointments. Apparently no other public policy school in the nation has such a dedicated Writing Center to help its students with policy writing. The 5-week writing course that the Center offers is pretty recommended.
  • (B) Ford strongly supports an interdisciplinary focus, with all Ford students required to take some credits outside of Ford, and with a ton of other Michigan schools (e.g. Public Health, Education) being highly ranked nationally. Apparently the process for taking non-Ford modules is pretty easy; you shouldn't need to apply for endless approvals for those. Also, other than the option of doing a dual degree in another discipline (which you can apply for after getting accepted into Ford), you can also apply for certain Certificate programs across the U of M schools, of which there are a ton.
  • (C) Also, they are pretty flexible with you exploring whatever interest you want. You don't have to declare a concentration in Ford, and so if you aren't sure that you want to specialize in a particular area of policy, this school will support that.

2. Ford's Careers & Alumni relations office seems really strong. They have an open door policy, so you can apparently ask them to take a look at a cover letter due in 30 minutes time before you send it off. They also hire some upper-level students as Peer Advisors, which does help in having someone approachable to speak to about career matters. They also send out a Mon afternoon newsletter collating upcoming career-related opportunities, like employer visits on campus or certain funding deadlines. They also seem quite aware that it's not just connecting you with opportunities that matter, but also helping you identify your interests and career aspirations, and have had past workshops to help students with that. They also seem to have strong alumni relations: "once you're in, you're always a part of the Ford community". 

3. While the compulsory Core Curriculum is somewhat quantitative methods-heavy with 3 quant classes, you can take up qualitative research methods classes as your electives. Though there are a ton of Ford professors who have a more economics focus, there are also some more recent qual professor hires: http://fordschool.umich.edu/news/2017/tamar-mitts-and-fabiana-silva-join-ford-school-faculty-fall-2017.

4. If you have a quant background and want to test out of the quant core classes, you can test out during orientation week. However, you may not want to do so as most of the 1st year students will be bonding around these class experiences, the professors who teach the quant core classes seem universally beloved, and you will have to substitute those classes with other credits anyway.

5. While GSI positions are by no means guaranteed, you can apply for GSI positions across other U of M schools and apparently Ford GSIs have a pretty good reputation. You can also try working at various Centers across the U of M.

6. Not sure how much this matters to you, but this will be the last year with the current well-loved Dean of the Ford School. Her successor has not been confirmed yet.

7. The students really seem to have fun here. The Fab Ford Idol karaoke at a local bar was really well-attended and apparently a faculty member even did a song.

Feel free to message if there's anything in particular you'd like to know about - there was way too much information to recount in full!

 

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I called admissions and they said those with funding have to respond by April 15 and then they'll redistribute funds not accepted before April 20. They try to spread it out among those that submitted requests to receive additional funding. Tricia mentioned they generally don't give out large amounts of additional funding but do plan to give out what was not accepted. Makes it hard with other schools deadlines of April 15 :/

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@justkelia You're welcome! No, they didn't mention that. 

They did send out this email last week though: "At this point, we do not have any funding updates; however, we will assess the funding situation again on Monday, and inform you of a decision early next week. Please note, if additional funds do become available, offers would most likely be in the $5,000 - $10,000 range."

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