Admissions & Financial Aid

We encourage you to join other like-minded innovators and problem-solvers in our award-winning MPA program.

If you have any questions about the MPA program or application process, please call us at 617-287-6905 or email us at public.affairs@umb.edu.


Why Study Public Administration at UMass Boston?

High-quality and Affordable

In 2016, U.S. News and World Report ranked our public administration programs #77 in the top 100 in its category. It is ranked #2 among public universities in New England. Learn more about UMass Boston rankings from U.S. News and World Report

According to College Affordability Guide, our public administration programs are ranked the most affordable in New England and in the top 50 nationwide.

Using information from the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management (APPAM) as its guide, BestValueSchools.com published its 2015 list of the 50 Most Innovative Public Service Schools in the United States. Noting the public service mission of the John W. McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies, the list ranks UMass Boston 29th.

In 2014, our Graduate Program Director Amy E. Smith earned the Graduate Faculty Teaching Award (master's level) from the Northeastern Association of Graduate Schools. This honor recognizes excellence and creativity in the teaching of graduate students with an emphasis on pedagogy, including classroom-based and/or distance learning instruction.

Values-Driven and Impactful

At UMass Boston, we focus our teaching, research, and service on equity, community engagement, and serving underrepresented populations.

With an emphasis on social and economic justice and effective and innovative governance, the McCormack Graduate School’s public administration programs have an international reputation for values-driven research, award-winning interdisciplinary education, and services that impacts local and global communities.

Graduate Studies in Boston

UMass Boston’s beautiful waterfront campus is located in a leading city with a high density of world-renowned colleges and universities. New England’s premier urban public research university offers its diverse students an intimate learning environment and the rich experiences of a city known for ideas, politics, history, and transformation.

Accelerated Master’s Degree Program

For highly-qualified UMass Boston undergraduates in the College of Liberal Arts and Honors College, this unique program allows you to finish your master’s degree in approximately half the time and at half the cost of a traditional two-year master’s program.

You will replace undergraduate electives with graduate coursework before matriculating as a graduate student to complete your master’s degree.

Learn more about the Accelerated Master's Degree Program in Public Administration.

Tracks & Related Program

Application Form

Statement of Purpose

Write a 300 word essay on your reasons for considering this UMass Boston MPA program in relation to your academic background, professional work experience, and career goals and a 1,200 word essay describing your personal qualities and development and how they have influenced your career choice.

Official Transcripts

Submit official copies of all undergraduate and graduate transcripts from all colleges attended.

GRE Scores

Send your official Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores. Previous scores less than five years old will be accepted.

Applicants may qualify for a GRE waiver if the applicant has at least a 3.0 cumulative undergraduate GPA and at least 3 years of relevant work experience. To inquire about a waiver, please email public.affairs@umb.edu.

Letters of Recommendation

Please include three letters of recommendation. We prefer that one letter be from a former professor or individual who can address your intellectual aptitude for graduate study; others can be from a supervisor or other professional reference.

Résumé or CV

Add a current résumé or CV noting your previous educational (a bachelor's degree is required) and working experience.

Application Fee

Don't forget the application fee: currently $60.00 for domestic applicants or $100.00 for international applicants: payable by credit card online [MasterCard or VISA].

Application Deadline

Applications received after April 15 will be reviewed on a space-available basis.

We typically admit one cohort of 15-25 students each fall. We currently do not enroll students for spring semester admissions.

Other Resources for Financial Aid

Graduate Aid at UMass Boston

The National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration offers an extensive list of financial aid, scholarships, fellowships and loans for prospective students.

Student Housing and Cost of Living Considerations

Office of Student Housing (617-287-6011)

Construction of dormitories is underway for 2018 occupancy. Until then, UMass Boston provides housing referral assistance and has a partnership with several area apartment complexes.

Rental rates vary dramatically across Boston neighborhoods and surrounding areas. Depending on your lifestyle, family size, or willingness to have roommates, costs may be higher or lower. For more information, please see our Boston Rental Cost Comparisons

UMass Boston is conveniently located at the UMass/JFK Library stop on the subway’s Red Line with free shuttle bus service to campus.