Admission and Application

Applications to the M.P.A. program must meet the Graduate College requirements of waiving an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university with an overall grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.  Students with an undergraduate GPA of at least 2.5, who demonstrate a record of relevant work experience and professional advancement, may also be considered for conditional admission. While standardized language tests (TOEFL or IELTS) apply to international applicants, submitting scores from GRE or GMAT tests is optional.

Admission criteria and application instructions

Admission Requirements

The following must be submitted in order to be considered for admission:

  1. The completed University online application for Graduate admission, with paid application fee.
  2. An official transcript from each undergraduate and graduate institution attended (except Western Michigan University).
  3. A brief essay explaining how the M.P.A. degree will help you meet your personal and career goals. This should briefly describe your creative or scholarly interests and your professional goals (including future jobs or careers interests/plans).
  4. A brief statement on whether you expect to be accepted as an in-career or pre-career student, and why. This statement should also explain if you expect additional credit for your professional experience, and link this expectation to experience listed on your resume.
  5. A current resume including all academic, professional, and volunteer experience.

Admission decisions are based on the undergraduate grade point average, any prior graduate course work, work experience, standardized test scores, and you personal essay.

Application instructions

WMU has an online graduate application system that allows all students (domestic and international) to submit required information into one system. General application information for the University, as well as specific requirements for our program, are captured in this system.

Apply Here

M.P.A. deadlines


International Students


If you have additional questions concerning the M.P.A. program admissions process, please review the frequently asked questions. If you have more in-depth questions, contact the School of Public Affairs and Administration