Archive for interview

Interview With Second-Year Student from Japan

We rolled out more decisions yesterday but the Committee does still have work to do.  Decision notifications will definitely extend in to next week.  We are still deliberating on all three classes of admission offers:  admit, waitlist, and those we will be unable to offer admission to.  For those of you still waiting I know it is hard, but we are working as fast as we can.

I thought I would take a break from pure admission entries and go with a recent interview today.  Enjoy.


Junji Koike

MPA candidate 2011:  Second year student with a concentration on IFEP

Junji Koike is originally from Japan. His undergraduate degree is from Keio University. After he earned his degree in Policy Management, he worked as a policy researcher in the Japanese think tank Nomura Research Institute. While working there, he got involved with projects related to public management, public finance and local government. He is planning to go back to Japan after SIPA.

What attracted you to SIPA?

Considering my background at Nomura Research Institute, SIPA was the ideal school. First, SIPA covers a broad range of issues related with public policies around the world. SIPA has helped me to explore interlinked public policy subjects by offering multiple kinds of lectures, seminars, and events.

Secondly, many professors at SIPA are experienced professionals. I’ve taken lectures and seminars with public officials including the former Mayor of New York City and international bankers as well as well-known academics. These professionals have offered me very vivid practical knowledge as well as a unique academic perspective.

Thirdly, the location of SIPA is excellent. Thanks to its location, I have the privilege of having lectures from world leaders, such as Bill Clinton and Kofi Annan, senior officers of the United Nations and New York City government, and various mass media pundits.

What prepared you to come to SIPA?

I often feel that my experience as a policy researcher have helped me to study and work with the other SIPA students, particularly, my public policy knowledge, my project management and data analysis skills, and my perspective as a Japanese researcher.

What has been the most challenging part of your SIPA experience?

Many classes at SIPA require group work. This semester I am working with four different groups. It is common that these assignments have the same or close deadlines. Additionally, working with people from different backgrounds is sometimes challenging in terms of arriving to an agreement. I actually appreciate this challenge because I’m learning a lot about international collaborations from these group projects.

What kind of job would you like to get when you graduate?

I have been working for around 10 years at Nomura Research Institute, which is sponsoring my master’s at SIPA. So I have to go back and work for them once I graduate. But, I am so excited to go back because I’ll be able to apply what I’ve learned in SIPA to my job.

What advice would you give to a prospective student?

I would say, “Open up your heart!” Faculty and students in SIPA have fascinating backgrounds and they are ready to make a difference to the world. I often feel unlimited possibilities from SIPA people. “Please don’t underestimate your neighbors in SIPA!”

Interview and Biography Page

What do all of the people in the photo collage below have in common?

They are all students or alumni of SIPA that have recently had either an interview or their biography posted to our web site.  If you did not know already, we have interviews with over 100 students, alumni, faculty, and administrators and you have access to all of them simply by clicking here.

This is a great way to for you to hear directly from those who are “in the know” and I encourage you to take advantage of this resource.

Top 10 Tips for Communicating with Us – Recap

During the early portion of the fall of 2010 I published a series of entries providing notes on things to consider when contacting our office, looking for information, and when applying.  In order to have a single reference point, I decided to combine all of these entries into a single entry.

What you see below are links to the 10 posts.  If you have yet to review the list, I highly recommend doing so. All of the information will help to ensure that we are able to assist you in the best manner possible and that you will be able to submit your application smoothly.

Number 1 – Always use the same email address when communicating with our office – this includes the email you use when you submit your application

Number 2 – Avoid Unnecessarily Creating a Duplicate Online Application

Number 3 – Avoid copying several parties on the same email and avoid long emails

Number 4 – Thoroughly review our FAQ Page

Number 5 – When leaving a voice mail message speak slowly, clearly, and state your telephone number twice

Number 6 – If you must mail something to our office, use a private mail courier

Number 7 – Check out our student, alumni, faculty, staff interview page

Number 8 – Familiarize Yourself with Expenses and Start searching for fellowhips/grants as soon as possible!

Number 9 – Attend an information session or recruitment event

Number 10 – Subscribe to this blog!

Office Communication Top Ten List – Entry #7

This is the seventh entry in our “Top 10″ list for you to consider when communicating with our office and applying.

Number 7 – Check out our student, alumni, faculty, staff interview page.

One of the most common questions we get is from prospective students that wish to speak with alumni, students, or faculty.  The top priority of our faculty is to work with current students and they often are unable to respond to the high volume of email requests.  We generally reserve contact with our alumni to current students for the same reason – sheer volume.

We do have student volunteers but their top priority is to focus on their studies and professional development.  We do our best to put applicants in touch with current students but often this takes a bit of time and coordination.

However, you can hear from students, alumni, staff, and faculty by visiting our interview page.  We have text and video interviews available and we continually try to add new content.  This is a great way to hear directly from those with experience in our programs without having to wait.

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"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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