Application Procedures and Admissions Requirements

Students from diverse undergraduate backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply. In certain cases, students with no prior training in American administrative institutions or the the social and behavioral sciences may be required to enroll in undergraduate courses to properly prepare themselves for graduate study in the MPA program.

To apply to the MPA program, please submit an electronic application through the Graduate School.  Additional information on the application process and admissions requirements can be found on the College of Charleston Graduate School website and the Graduate Catalog


Master of Public Administration Program Admission
Requirements for Degree Seeking Students

  • Minimum grade point average of 3.000 (on a 4.000 scale) is preferred.
  • A letter of intent stating your reasons for applying to the program, areas of interest, and career objectives.
  • A current resume.
  • Two letters of recommendation from persons familiar with your capacity for achievement and motivation to successfully complete a graduate degree - ideally, at least one of these references would come from a collegiate-level instructor, yet we recognize this may be a challenge for applicants who are not recent college graduates. 
  • Applicants, particularly those who do not meet one or more of the conditions for admission, are strongly encouraged to submit a writing sample, such as undergraduate theses or term papers, samples of work projects, etc.

Note: The admissions committee will carefully considers the applicant’s undergraduate GPA and letter of intent, as well as letters of recommendation and significant life experiences, particularly in public or nonprofit administration. Students with an undergraduate GPA below the 3.000 threshold who demonstrate the likelihood of success in graduate school through adequate academic performance, previous professional and/or volunteer experience and supportive reference letters may be considered for conditional admission status.

It is also important to note that the GRE is required in order to be considered for a College of Charleston graduate fellowship.

Note: International students must also fulfill the requirements listed in the Graduate Catalog.

Deadlines for Applications:

  • Fall: Priority deadline is January 15, final deadline is July 1
  • Spring: Priority deadline is November 1, final deadline is December 1
  • Summer: No summer admission