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Resources for Pre-Career Students

A Pre-career Student enters the MPA (Masters in Public Administration) program without two years of professional public management experience.  All pre-career students are required to enroll in PSPA 695 and work as an intern for a public or nonprofit agency.  Internships are coordinated through the Department of Public Administration and students generally work 20 hours per week and are paid directly by the internship organization or through Northern Illinois University as graduate assistant.

Application Deadlines

Fall: Spring:
February 1: preferred deadline to qualify for internship September 1: final deadline
March 31: final deadline

Pre-career students complete an online application through the graduate school with an application fee of $40.  Students with a GRE fee-waiver must obtain and submit a signed copy of said waiver from the Financial Aid department to be eligible for a waiver of the application fee.

Application Process

  • A completed online application
    • Names and e-mail addresses of two academic references (You will be prompted for the e-mail addresses of your references.  Your reference will then receive an email from the graduate school with instructions for submitting your reference.)
    • Name and e-mail address of one professional reference (You will be prompted for the e-mail addresses of your references.  Your reference will then receive an email from the graduate school with instructions for submitting your reference.)
  • Official test scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test.  The NIU Institutional Code is #1559. Graduates of NIU in fields of POLS or CLCE with GPAs of 3.3 or higher may request a waiver of the GRE requirement by sending an email to publicadm@niu.edu
  • Official transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions attended.  Send transcripts to: The Graduate School, Northern Illinois University, 223 Adams Hall, DeKalb, Illinois, 60115
  • After your application has been received by the Graduate School, a Career Goals statement and resume will be required.  Please follow the instructions in the email they will send you. 

Applicants should apply for admission in the year in which they actually intend to enroll. Requests to defer enrollment after an applicant has been admitted will be considered but are granted only on a case-by-case basis.  Once accepted into the MPA program, you will complete the application process for an internship.

General Program Information:

Specializations

Internship Program

Internship Program Partners

Student Engagement Opportunities

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Tuition and Fees

Tuition Estimator {Please select Graduate (Student-At-large) in Academic Career for correct estimation}

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