Student government admissions rep. offers some reflections

Oct 13 2023
Yiping Li

As the Princeton University Policy Student Government (PUPSG) Admissions Representative, the fall is filled with excitement not only due to the beginning of another year at SPIA but also because it signals the start of another admissions cycle. In my role, I work closely with the wonderful team at Graduate Admissions to ensure that prospective and admitted students can hear directly from current students from various backgrounds about their SPIA experiences. 

We have a jam-packed cycle filled with great events! I hope everyone has marked their calendar for our Open House on October 21. I also look forward to meeting many prospective students via virtual Zoom office hours (coming in November and December) along with other current students from both the MPA and the MPP programs. We are excited to have this dedicated space in addition to office hours with the Graduate Admissions team so prospective students can have a more complete picture of what it means to be a member of the SPIA community right here in Princeton, New Jersey. 

For me, doing this work is also personally rewarding. I am a first-generation immigrant who grew up in a low-income neighborhood. It was through admissions events that I was able to meet with admissions officers and current students to learn about the college admissions process and feel welcome into the space by those who share my marginalized identities. 

The same held when I was applying to graduate schools. The Graduate Admissions team laid out the steps and provided much helpful advice for crafting a strong application for SPIA. The current students generously shared their personal experiences of navigating through the application process and finding community here.

To ensure that my experience was not unique among those who share my identities, I have always been actively engaged in admission and recruitment with the institutions I have attended. I serve as an alumni interviewer and an alumni advisor for undergraduates, particularly those who are FGLI, at my alma mater. When the opportunity to serve as the admissions representative opened up at SPIA, I jumped at the chance to work with the Admissions team. 

The one message I have always hoped to convey and continue conveying to prospective students of every background at SPIA through our events remains the same: you belong.

So, I hope you will join us this fall at our events to meet members of the Admissions team as well as look out for office hours with current students soon to be announced. I look forward to meeting you all!