At Harris Public Policy, impact starts on day one.

At Harris Public Policy, you will gain a foundation in the tools of data collection and analysis and become a policy expert and professional leader. You’ll acquaint yourself with the city of Chicago, the University of Chicago, and the people shaping policy and our collective future across the country and around the world. You’ll turn the passion you have today into proven social impact for tomorrow.

Day One: Hit the Ground Running

Through Harris’ orientation program, Day One, new students acquaint themselves with campus, graduate life, and each other. If needed, you'll brush up on your math and economic skills, your English proficiency (for international students), and prepare yourself for the Core. By the time classes begin, you’re prepared for the Harris curriculum, you can navigate the city of Chicago, and you know how to take advantage of the resources and professional development opportunities available to you.

Shape Your Unique Path

Meet your academic and career advisors and sign up for the Mentor Program. Connecting with advisors and Harris alumni will help you make the decisions that will shape your academic and professional paths. Developing a customized career development action plan will help you make the most of your time at Harris and beyond.

Establish Your Foundation

Your core courses give you a solid background in statistical analysis, research methods, and the policymaking process—tools that you can use to address any social or policy problem. 

Broaden Your Perspective

Hear from policy analysts, academics, journalists, elected officials, foreign ambassadors and other leading practitioners by attending mini-courses, lunch-and-learns, guest lectures, Harris-sponsored public events, University events, and more. Students typically have the option of attending several events every day. 

Become an Expert

Equipped with the skills you've acquired through the Harris core curriculum, you’re ready to confront any social challenge. Now you’ll focus on a chosen area of study. Be strategic about course selections and electives, certificates, and student organizations so that your areas of interest become your areas of expertise. Diverse experiences at Harris help develop you as a policy scholar and practitioner.

Tap the UChicago Network

Extracurriculars and University student groups also help strengthen relationships in the Harris community and across campus. Tapping into the University of Chicago network is a valuable way to broaden your opportunities at Harris and lay the groundwork for professional success.

Target Your Job Search

Conversations about your career path begin on day one with orientation, initial conversations with your career advisor, and discussions with other students about your aspirations. These conversations will inform your job search. Your career advisor can help you develop an overall search strategy to find your dream job.

Prepare to Graduate

Literally a “calling together,” convocation at the University of Chicago assembles all elements of the University community: degree candidates and their families and friends, faculty, deans, officers, the provost, the president, and the trustees of the University. As a Harris graduate, you remain a member of the University community and you join an alumni network that knows how to get things done.

Engage with the Alumni Community

Harris alumni lead across fields and nations, creating positive change as economists and analysts, CEOs and diplomats. Stay connected with fellow alumni through the Alumni Council as well as the Public Policy Lecture Series and other events, and maintain a relationship with Harris and your alumni community that will continue to serve as a resource throughout your career.