Please share any additional information about yourself that you believe would be of interest to the Admissions Committee. Please focus on information that is not already reflected in the other parts of your application or might not be clear in the information submitted. You may also use this section to provide an explanation of any areas of concern in your academic record or your personal history.
We at the admissions office receive lots of inquiries about the above essay question, and understandably so. This question is asked on most graduate and undergraduate applications as an optional method of describing any mitigating circumstances that might impact your admission credentials. While it can certainly be used for that; at SIPA an answer to this question is required.
So how do you answer it? First and foremost, as the prompt itself implies, use this space to answer any lingering questions the Admissions Committee might have. This could mean addressing gaps in your resume, explaining personal circumstances that may have led in a dip in your GPA as an undergraduate or expressing your ability to perform academically despite less than stellar test scores.
If you are among the lucky applicants for whom none of these issues are of concern, use this space to tell us something about yourself that we would not find elsewhere on the application. Although your professional experience may be impressive, SIPA is a competitive program and that could be said for the vast majority of our applicants. The Admissions Committee is not just admitting individual applicants but building a class like a mosaic. What’s special about you? What makes you tick? Was there a particular experience that sparked your interest in international affairs? What makes you who you are? There is no one way to tell this story. Just be as specific as possible and use this space to draw a picture of how/what you can add to our incoming class.
We look forward to getting to know you!