Archive for News

Professor Glenn Denning, MPA-DP Program Director, giving the keynote address for the One World Festival

Last week Professor Glenn Denning, our MPA-DP Program Director led a public talk at #OneWorldFestival event at Queen’s University, Belfast. Professor Denning discussed how the world can build a sustainable food supply system in a time when an ever-increasing population is to reach 10 billion by 2050.

As he put it: “It’s not rocket science – we have all the knowledge we need. What we need to do is invest pro-actively and strategically or we face the catastrophe of famine and extreme environmental degradation we have all been warned about.”

Read more on what Professor Denning shared before the audience of the event here.

Learn more about the MPA-DP Program. Follow us on:

The First Day of School

Tuesday was the first day of classes here, and you can feel the energy of students, faculty, and the community on campus. Here’s a little of what’s going on at Columbia, and what you can expect.

The blog is taking listener requests

Remember to search through our archives, and if you can’t find the topic you want to know about, submit an idea here. I’m excited to introduce you to our new batch of program assistants, who will share their application experiences over the next few months. We’ve published a few posts based on your feedback:

What’s new at SIPA

Welcome to the newest members of the SIPA community, the Class of 2021. More than 450 students have joined us from 61 countries for our MIA/MPA/MPA-DP programs, and the incoming class is 60 percent international, with an average of 3.5 years of work experience.

Along with several visiting professors, adjunct faculty, and senior research scholars, SIPA also welcomes two new tenured faculty members:

  • Sandra Black, an influential and accomplished labor economist, has joined us as Professor of International and Public Affairs, jointly appointed with the Department of Economics. She comes to Columbia from the University of Texas. Her research focuses on the role of early life experiences on the long-run outcomes of children, as well as issues of gender and discrimination. She has previously worked as an economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and as a member of President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisors, among other positions.
  • Keren Yarhi-Milo, a leading scholar of decision-making in foreign policy, joins us as Professor of International and Public Affairs, jointly appointed in the Department of Political Science. She comes to SIPA from Princeton University. She has written two exceptional books – “Who Fights for Reputation?” and “Knowing the Adversary” – both of which explore the topic of elite decision-making in foreign policy.

“No, I won’t start spying on my foreign-born students”

Columbia University President Lee C. Bollinger wrote this op-ed in The Washington Post, which addresses the university’s stance on students as they return to campus.

The mission of a university is to foster an open atmosphere conducive to speculation, experimentation and creation. American higher education is the envy of the world not in spite of, but because of, its unrivaled commitment to openness and diversity. Attracting — and welcoming — the brightest minds in the world, regardless of nationality or country of origin, is what we’re all about.

Meeting current and future students, preparing for graduation, and a “Stealthy Starbucks”

While it’s slowing down a little bit for the Admissions and Financial Aid office, we’re still busy with everything happening on campus. Students and faculty are wrapping up finals, and the Class of 2019 is preparing for graduation — SIPA’s is this weekend, and the Columbia University-wide Commencement is next Wednesday.

You may have noticed that we’ve had a number of guest posts from SIPA students on the blog, talking about everything from student life to projects they worked on — we’ll keep this up so that you can continue to get a full student perspective.

A few updates:

  • I got the pleasure of meeting a group of Marist College students a few weeks ago, whose guidance counselor is herself a SIPA alum! Not all of the students were planning on applying immediately after graduation, but as I told them: If coming to SIPA is your goal, connect with us at Admissions sooner rather than later. It’s helpful to have time to learn and prepare for the application process instead of rushing last-minute while juggling everything else going on in your life.

  • A friendly reminder that the Yellow Ribbon Program is open for the 19/20 academic year. The application is available here under “The Yellow Ribbon Program.” For more information, please email sipa_finaid@columbia.edu.
  • SIPA alumni gave some advice for incoming students last year. I think it’s still relevant today in figuring out how to navigate any graduate school system.
  • And finally, a bit of light reading as we head into the end of the week: “At CIA Starbucks, even the baristas are covert”

If you’re a blog reader and are interested in a topic that we haven’t covered, feel free to email or submit an idea. Two recent posts were based on suggestions by readers like you.

Congratulations to Rep. Elissa Slotkin MIA ’03

Yesterday the 116th U.S. Congress was sworn in, and it’s one of the most diverse groups ever, including the largest number of female members in Congress with more than 100 women in the U.S. House alone.

Elle.com featured 35 new women elected to the U.S. House of Representatives back in November, including SIPA alum Elissa Slotkin MIA ’03. You can watch Elle’s “We the People: Your Freshmen Congresswomen Recite the Preamble to the Constitution” here. In the accompanying article here. Rep. Slotkin states:

“This polarization and vitriol has been imported from Washington, and Michiganders can’t stand it. Michiganders didn’t use to fight about politics; we fought about sports. Women are refusing to stay silent when they see something contravening core values. They were the first and loudest to push me to do more, to heal the community.”

We’re closing early today and will be back on January 2, 2019!

The Office of Admissions and Financial Aid is closing early today at 2:30pm for the Christmas holidays. Our office will be closed through next week and back open on January 2, 2019, at 9am ET.

Don’t forget, our general deadline, with SIPA fellowship aid consideration, is at 11:59 PM ET on January 5th. The video essay is only available after you submit your application and pay the application fee, and will appear in your Applicant Status page once those steps are completed. I hope you can find some downtime during the holidays to work towards completing the application. (I truly mean this — every year we see that people do everything in the application up until the video essay. They’re just two minutes from being done with completing it, which is so frustrating!) We really do look forward to reading your applications.

Until then, all of us at SIPA Admissions wish you happy holidays, a fantastic 2019, and best of luck with all of your end-of-the-year activities.

P.S. Columbia University is exceptionally pretty in the winter! Follow @columbia.sipa on Instagram for more beautiful photos and some 2018 highlights.

"The most global public policy school, where an international community of students and faculty address world challenges."

—Merit E. Janow, Dean, SIPA, Professor of Practice, International and Economic Law and International Affairs

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