The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Information for New SPP Students

Photo of Thompson Hall with text: Welcome to UMass School of Public Policy

We’re excited that you’re joining the School of Public Policy, a vibrant community of students and faculty committed to solving problems for the common good and making positive social change. We’ve put together this page as a one-stop resource for some of the information you’ll need as you get started in the program — but please remember that we’re always here to answer your questions as well. Just drop us an email.

Upcoming Events for Students

June 1, 12 - 1 p.m.: "June Career Conversation: Making the Most of Your Time at SPP to Learn and Find a Job You Love." Watch your email for more information, including how to register.

Program Requirements

Master of Public Policy Curriculum
One-Year Master of Public Policy Timeline
4+1 Master of Public Policy Timeline

Master of Public Policy and Administration Curriculum
Master of Public Policy and Administration Timeline

Dual Degree Information

Course Information

Graduate Course List

Graduate Electives by Category

Internship Information

Because of the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 outbreak, SPP is waiving the internship requirement for the incoming Master of Public Policy students. MPP students who opt to waive the internship should take a three-credit elective course in its place.

Interested MPP and MPPA are still welcomed to pursue an internship and, if you find an appropriate placement, may take the for-credit internship course. Please complete the Registration Form for Summer Internship for Credit and email it to Satu Zoller for a signature. You will also need to complete a Graduate Internship Contract as soon as you have secured your internship and before you begin work.

SPP has some funds available to offer students financial support during their internships. To apply for financial support, please complete and submit an Internship Support Funds Application, well as a Graduate Internship Contract.

At the end of your internship, you must complete an Internship Evaluation Form. Your supervisor must complete a Supervisor’s Evaluation Form.

Information for International Students

Please visit the UMass Amherst International Programs Office site for information and resources for international students.

Response to COVID-19

The UMass Amherst administration is developing a plan for the entire university for the fall semester, which we will share with you as soon as it’s available. In the meantime, the School of Public Policy is also developing contingency plans as well and is committed to ensuring a high-quality educational experience for all our students. We understand that the COVID-19 crisis has upended people’s lives, and we will work with students to try to accommodate your needs.

You can also find information about the university’s response on the UMass Amherst website.

UMass Amherst Graduate School

Visit the Graduate School website for information about programs and resources for graduate students, including events, inclusion activities, professional development support, and policies regarding grading, transfer credits, registration and degree requirements, and more.

Social Media

Be sure to follow the School of Public Policy on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. You’re invited to join the private UMass Amherst School of Public Policy Community Facebook group for students.

Living in Amherst

The UMass Amherst Office of Off-Campus Student Life offers resources for students living in the community, including information about housing, community and campus activities, and more. The Off-Campus Living Office offers housing assistance, including a Housing Guide for Graduate Students, local rental cost information, a search engine to help you find available housing, and a housemate agreement. 

You can find information about Amherst shops and restaurants, events, and other resources at the Amherst Area Chamber of Commerce and the Amherst Business Improvement District.