Do contact us early if you have questions or issues around your application. If you haven’t imagined, our office gets really busy and overwhelmed around this time, with the double-whammy of holidays and the deadline coming up. If you wait until the last minute, we may not be able to get to you in time, especially if it’s like 11pm ET for us. We are here to help, so help us help you by not waiting until the very last minute.

Don’t believe unsourced information about the SIPA application process. Every year someone tells me a “my friend told me that…” followed by some very wrong information – like they have a better chance of being admitted if they refuse financial help from SIPA. That’s not how SIPA works at all! And if “your friend” told you and your friend does not work at SIPA, you should…

Do your research! We have a ton of information just on this blog, but also on the website, and of course the actual office. We even have current SIPA students you can connect with to get the inside scoop. Researching SIPA will not only make sure your application compliance rate stays high, but that you are able to speak to why you would be a good candidate for SIPA in your application.

Don’t tell me what I already know. That being said — the personal statements are pretty short. I’ve read a lot of statements where applicants write that “SIPA is the #1 policy school!” And honestly — I already know that. What I want to know is about you as an applicant, and how what SIPA provides connects to you.

And finally…Don’t stress! MUCH easier said than done, I know. Student Affairs Assistant Dean Melanie Pagan wrote this blog post on how to manage stress during the application process, which she is personally very familiar with. It may be even scarier to be writing your dreams and aspirations down so concretely in the application, especially in a tumultuous year. But you are considering SIPA for a reason. You have something to offer – probably a lot of things! – and you are capable, and you will find the right grad school match for you. You got this!

The Office of Admissions will be closed December 31 and January 1. Wishing you all a safe and happy new year!