Public Administration

Program Degree Major Code Admissions
Term Deadline
Master’s MPA PADM Fall 2024* January 9, 2024

January 1, 2024 (Recommended) ***

Master’s (Online) MPA The online format is currently undergoing some internal transitions, but we anticipate applications for the online format will be available in early 2024. Please visit How to Apply for more information.
Program Director Willow Jacobson (
Director Of Graduate Admissions Cara Robinson (
Address Master of Public Administration Program
CB# 3330, Knapp-Sanders Building
University of North Carolina
Chapel Hill, NC 27599
Phone 919-962-1181
Test Requirements
Please see the Test Requirements section under Other Requirements
Letters of Recommendation 3 – (academic, professional and volunteer are accepted).

Candidates that have graduated within the last five years are encouraged to include at least one academic letter of recommendation.  *For candidates with a cumulative GPA lower than 3.3 they are highly encouraged to submit GRE scores and/or two academic letters of recommendation.

International Applicants Only TOEFL or IELTS score (no more than two years old)
Other Requirements In addition to the University’s required application materials, applicants should review the information below for additional expectations or application requirements.

*The UNC MPA program does not require a graduate entrance exam to apply; however, applicants must demonstrate adequate quantitative, analytic, and writing aptitude to be admitted. Students who believe their application materials do not fully reflect their academic potential are encouraged to include in their application an official graduate entrance exam test score received within the last 5 years (this is particularly recommended for students with cumulative GPAs below 3.3). Additionally, candidates are encouraged to submit two academic letters of recommendation.  Any candidate may submit official, current graduate entrance exam scores (GRE, GMAT or LSAT) for consideration by the admissions committee. Contact the Director of Admissions, Cara Robinson to discuss further. Please visit for instructions on submitting official scores to the University.

Statement of Purpose:  In one to two pages, respond to the question, “Why do you want to earn an MPA from UNC-Chapel Hill?” In your statement, please address the following:

  1. Your professional goals,
  2. Experiences that have led you to consider a public service career, and
  3. Why the UNC-Chapel Hill MPA program would be a good fit for you.

Supplemental Writing Prompt: “Public service values are critical to the study and practice of public administration.  In 500 words or less, please share how you see public service values impacting the work you do now or the work that you hope to do after your graduate studies.”

Please upload this document in the Essay-Required section on the Program Supplement page in your application.

Most Recent Resume or CV

Prerequisite Course Requirement:  A minimum of 3 semester hours credit in American Government and Politics or an equivalent course.  AP credit is acceptable if included on your undergraduate transcript.  NOTE: This is not a requirement to apply for admission. Admitted students who decide to enroll will be notified if they need the course and will be eligible to enroll in our free, online course prior to classes starting.

While the final deadline for submission to the on-campus MPA is January 9th, the MPA Admissions Committee strongly encourages all applications to be completed by January 1st, 2024 for best funding opportunities.

*Students may apply as non-degree seeking students in the Fall, Spring, or Summer, but the degree option is only available in the Fall.

**The School of Government also offers an online degree program, MPA@UNC. Please see for more information and to apply.

***Recommended deadlines are for best scholarship consideration.