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Cornell University — An Affordable Ivy League MPA

Posted by Cornell MPA Program Admissions Team on 11/1/18 4:40 PM

What are the savings of an MPA from CIPA in the long term? Is an MPA worth it?

You might be surprised how much you can save just in loan repayments by choosing Cornell's MPA program.

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As the land-grant university for New York State, Cornell’s statutory schools and colleges are able to offer an Ivy League education at an affordable price.  Our MPA program is one of the beneficiaries of the land-grant status. Indeed, Cornell University is the only Ivy League institution with this land-grant status. 

In a previous post from the CIPA 101 blog, we compared the overall costs of combined tuition, fees, and overall living expenses between CIPA and other MPA programs. Of comparable programs, CIPA was the most affordable, with total costs ranging $20-$40K less than our competitors. 

Financing your MPA degree requires many considerations. Support in the form of scholarships, fellowships, and earnings from part-time jobs can help defray the cost of your degree.  Many of us, however, rely on student loans to cover at least part of our expenses. If you’re planning on taking out student loans, though, you need to consider how interest will compound your total cost over the length of your loan repayment period.

Utilizing the tuition figures from 2016-2017  for Cornell University, Columbia University, New York University and Georgetown University, we compared the cost of tuition and living expenses, and used this as a basis for loans (assuming that students were given no funding support or scholarships). Using a standard 10-year loan repayment schedule with a rate of 6%, and assuming that students would begin work with an average salary of $75,000 a year, we found considerable differences in total loan repayment over the long-run.

You can see that the initial savings of the CIPA MPA degree over other programs ($20-$40 K) grows exponentially once loans are factored in.  With CIPA, you would save an additional $72,757 in loan repayment as compared to Columbia, $34,630 in loan repayment as compared to NYU, and $60,902 as compared to Georgetown.

What would you do 10 years after graduating from your MPA with that extra savings?

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