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Stanford Public Policy Informational Video

Stanford Public Policy Informational Video


I think you should
major in Public Policy because it’s a great
opportunity to learn across different disciplines. So there’s economics. There’s political science. There’s sociology. There’s law. And there are a lot of
different subject areas that you can learn about. And I think one of the greatest
things about our program is that you have an
opportunity to learn things that are going
to be applicable after you leave Stanford. But the fact is that
you can make an impact. And you can put in programs
and incentives and structures to do good work. And for me, I left
the classroom and I left being a development
worker because I wanted to make a larger impact. What has always really attracted
me to the Public Policy program is that it enables
students to get the skills they need to solve
really difficult problems and to make the
world a better place. Prior to applying to
graduate school at Stanford, I was in the military. I felt like a better way to
effect change in the world was through the policy end
rather than the blunt force end. We do tie it to the real world. It’s not textbook. You don’t pick up a book
and, it’s step 1, 2, and 3 and you’re done. So public policy
for me was a way to explore all of my
different interests while also getting a coherent
set of skills in something where I can, when I
graduate in a couple months, I can market myself with
a certain set of skills. We have students who are
involved in policy issues and they use all the
tools from Public Policy– from political science to
economics, statistics, ethics, philosophy. All these tools
together allow people to think about how to
formulate good policies and then how to
implement these policies. So another reason I was really
interested in Public Policy coming back to Stanford as
a Masters in Public Policy student was because of the
interdisciplinary nature of the Public Policy program. So my favorite class that
I’ve taken for Public Policy have been some
classes that have been part of my self-designed
concentration. And one example was
Strategic Philanthropy with Laura Arrilaga through
the business school, where I loved being in
an amazing environment with lots of inspiring MBAs
and having a case study style of learning where we
could think about philanthropy from a very strategic lens. Coming from a different
field where there’s not a lot of focus on
policy, government is sometimes sort of
disregarded or not considered very relevant. I think the program
has been really complimentary to what I’ve
learned in my other classes. In working with
the students it’s been interesting as
well, because there are a lot of Masters
level students who just kind of like,
hand out in the lounge. And so I’ll come here
and have my homework and I’ll have a question
or two and they’re always willing to help. And so it’s really great. And also to sometimes see the
things that they’re working on and see that, oh, I might
be able to take that class or something at some point. The department itself
and the people within it are just spectacular
individuals. They go out of their way to
help you become a better you. And they’re also really
helpful in both finding financial resources
and positions to TA or to work hourly to help
supplement your income. I have applied coursework
to the outside world threw a couple of internships
I’ve had the opportunity to do. A lot of what I learned
in Public Policy program I applied to
these internships, just being able to identify
where politics happens. So a lot of the skills that
I’ve learned in Public Policy have been very applicable to
just real life experiences. You learn by doing. You learn by doing
the practicums and you learn by doing
potential projects. Because that’s essentially
what we’re trying to simulate, what you’re going to have
to do when you actually go out and work for a non-profit
or work for a government agency or even work for a
business that’s trying to get some policy enacted. We’re very lucky
to have alumni who are extremely generous
with their time in mentoring our students. People say, what can you do
with a major in Public Policy? The answer is anything you want. We have students who
go work in Washington. They work for local governments. But they also go and work for
McKinsey and Goldman Sachs. They go work for
Teach For America. They go work for non-profits. They go to medical school.

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