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MPP Admissions

The Fall Quarter Application Deadline is February 1.

Minimum Requirements for Admission

  1. Possession of a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university.
  2. A grade point average of not less than 3.0 in all undergraduate course work.
  3. Academic preparation or work experience demonstrating analytical and writing skills.
  4. For applicants whose preparatory education is principally in a language other than English, a TOEFL score of 550 or higher is required (or 213 on the new conversation scale for the computer-based TOEFL exam). A score of 4.5 or higher on the essay portion of the TOEFL is also required.

How to Apply

  • Students can apply directly online via CSU Mentor.
  • Applicants must submit official transcripts to Cal Poly Graduate Admissions (see address below).
  • Students should submit the following electronically via Interfolio.
  1. Three letters of recommendation. The required letters of recommendation must include at least one academic reference and at least one professional reference.  The third letter of recommendation can be either an academic or a professional reference.  These recommendations must be written in English and ought to address relevant academic coursework, work experience and other preparation that make the applicant a strong candidate for the MPP program.
  2. Personal statement detailing the applicant’s understanding of, interest in and use for a public policy degree from the perspective of the applicant’s career and educational goals.
  3. Resume/CV detailing relevant academic and professional information.
  4. A scanned copy of your transcripts.
  • GRE scores are recommended but not required for admission. GRE scores should be sent electronically from the testing agency directly to Cal Poly Admissions.

Addresses for Graduate Admissions and MPP Director:

  • Graduate Admissions (transcripts)
    Cal Poly
    San Luis Obispo, CA 93407
  • For Interfolio Electronic submissions (letters, statement, resume), Interfolio

    Questions about Interfolio:
    Graduate Education
    Building 116, Room 212
    Phone: (805)756-2328
    Email: grad@calpoly.edu
     

Application deadlines are as follows:

  • Fall: February 1
  • Winter: Applications not accepted
  • Spring: Applications not accepted
  • Summer: Applications not accepted

Financial Aid

Cal Poly offers several financial resources to help students graduate with a Master of Public Policy degree:

  • State University Grant

    This grant is available for graduate students pursuing a first graduate degree who are California residents have financial aid eligibility. Please visit the Cal Poly Financial Aid website for more information about the grant, eligibility and application process.

  • Graduate Equity Fellowships

    Cal Poly's Graduate Equity Fellowship program seeks to increase the diversity of students completing Master's degree programs in the CSU. It provides fellowships for economically disadvantaged CSU students, especially from groups that are underrepresented among graduate degree recipients in their areas of study, and also promotes faculty mentoring and research opportunities. 

  • Non-Resident Tuition Waivers

    A limited number of non-resident tuition waivers are available for graduate students. The waiver is defined as a reduction in tuition fees for non-resident students to the resident rate. The waivers provide financial support for highly qualified applicants from outside the State of California. 

  • Resident Tuition Waivers

    Cal Poly offers a limited number of fee waivers for graduate students who are employed as teaching assistants or graduate assistants.

  • TA/GA Program

    Cal Poly supports a number of teaching and graduate assistantships funded by student success fees. These positions offer potential teaching and research experiences, working closely with specific faculty members as mentors. 

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