5th Year Option for Brown Undergraduates

As a Brown University senior, you have the opportunity to apply to to earn your Master's Degree in Urban Education Policy during a 5th year at Brown!

Benefits for 5th Year UEP Students:

  • Application fee waived
  • No GRE scores required for application
  • 2 Letters of Recommendation (instead of 3) required for application
  • 1-course load reduction (8 classes instead of 9) 
  • If accepted, a scholarship equal to 25% of total tuition 

The Urban Education Policy program provides students with unparalleled access to policy makers and education reformers. This one year program allows you to leave Brown with the skill set required to enter a competitive job market. Students from the UEP program have gone on to work in nonprofits, government, school districts, and the private sector, which speaks to the program’s broad applicability and unprecedented mentorship. 

Brown 5th Year UEP Alumni Features: 

Cindy Lung
Year: UEP '13, Cohort VII
Undergraduate Concentartion: Education Studies and Sociology


Why did you choose the 5th Year option?

My decision to do the 5th year was primarily to further my studies in education policy and to complement the work I've done in educational psychology. I also liked the program's emphasis on data methods and using data as a means to institute changes in the education system. From a practical standpoint, there were no issues experienced with adjustment to a new environment since I'd already been at Brown for the previous four years!

What have been some of the benefits of your Master’s degree? 

My internship placement provided opportunities for me to work with raw data and write publications geared at informing the general public about social and economic disparities in Rhode Island. The knowledge gained through working at this local organization, in addition to the UEP coursework that was heavy on policy analysis and research methodology, has been a guiding framework for understanding international education systems while working in Europe and Asia.

Why should a Brown undergrad stay for the UEP program? 

A Brown undergrad should stay for UEP if they have substantial interest in designing education policies and putting them into practice in the public and private sectors. 

Current job: 

I'm currently a Luce Scholar through the Henry Luce Foundation's Luce Scholars Program. My placement through the program is at the National Academy of Educational Research in Taiwan.

Mateus Baptista
Year:  
UEP '15, Cohort IV
Undergraduate Concentration: International Relations 



Why did you choose the 5th Year option? 

My undergraduate experience at Brown was extremely formative, however, I felt like I did not have skills that would land me the kinds of jobs I wanted. The UEP program teaches tangible skills for the policy world that are in high demand. I knew that doing the 5th year would make me more marketable considering the more technical skills I would be able to offer. I also was not entirely sure that education policy was my career path, but regardless I knew that the skills I would learn were applicable to many different sectors. Additionally, the benefits afforded to 5th year students are unparalleled.  

What have been some of the benefits of your Master’s degree? 

I worked for a school district in Los Angeles and the practical hands-on experience has been instrumental in my professional growth. As an undergrad I learned how to do research and write papers, so I wanted a program that got me out in the field - UEP does just that. It was the first substantive professional experience I had ever had up to that point and therefore instrumental for my career. In addition, its hard to know about the field of education unless you are in it, learning from first hand experiences. The program gives you the privilege to be in the field as you are learning about it. As one of the youngest people in the cohort, there is also tremendous opportunity to learn from people who have had years of experience! 

Why should a Brown undergrad stay for the UEP program? 

If you are passionate about education reform this program is for you. You don’t have to know exactly where you want to be after this program. Most people do not. The program will provide you the tools to clarify exactly where you want to be. The UEP program also has a wide network of policy makers and education experts. In one of our classes, we consulted for the Rhode Island Department of Education conducting research for their strategic plan. This accessibility is unique to Brown and the UEP program. 

Current job: 

I'm currently a Congressional Fellow working in the United States Congress with a focus on higher education policy.

Rocio Bravo
Year: UEP '11, Cohort V
Undergraduate Concentration: Political Science



Why did you choose the 5th Year option? 

As an undergraduate, I took many classes in the education department. I became very familiar with the faculty and gained a deep interest in their research and work in the field. As an undergraduate, I had a lot of ideas around what I would pursue with my political science background, and I had a great desire to work in education. Once I learned of the UEP Program, I knew it would be a perfect next step! I attended an Open House early in the fall of my senior year, and after that, I couldn’t imagine leaving Brown without the opportunity to work alongside and learn from an extraordinary team who shared a similar passion for education policy. 

What have been some of the benefits of your Master’s degree? 

My Master’s degree has helped me understand practices and policies in a much broader context. Having a background in education policy drives me to think critically about the impact my work has on a larger scale. I have the tools to work with students one-on-one while also understanding what’s happening in education nationwide. This is very important for me because as an educator, I want to ensure that I personalize my advising in the most supportive way possible. I am in a better position to do that if I am also aware of what’s going on in the field. 

KIPP is a results-driven organization, and we look at data a lot. With my Master’s degree, I feel very comfortable analyzing the data and thinking of how to implement changes in my work. Not only am I looking at organization-wide data, I am also collecting my own quantitative and qualitative data to inform my practices!  

Why should a Brown undergrad stay for the UEP program? 

I loved the design, rigor, and flexibility of the program! The professors are extremely thoughtful about the curriculum, and the program offers a significant amount of flexibility for students to explore a variety of policy areas. For instance, I did a lot of research in my classes on college success and the gap between student matriculation and graduation for low-income and first-generation students. At the same time, I was working directly in the field of philanthropy through my internship at the Hazen Foundation in New York City and researching extended learning time through my fellowship at the Annenberg Institute for School Reform. How cool and exciting is that?! 

I had such a smooth transition between my undergraduate and graduate studies, and I am very grateful I had the opportunity to enjoy Brown an extra year!

Current job: 

I am a College and Career Advisor at KIPP NYC Through College. I work in college access and success supporting students get to and through college!