USC Price School of Public Policy

MPA Students

I came to Price because there were so many opportunities — the classes, the internships
and externships, meeting people. I didn’t just want to be in school, I wanted to develop myself professionally.

Ashley HernandezAshley Hernandez, MPA ’12

MPA StudentsStudents from a wide range of backgrounds and interests are drawn to the USC Master of Public Administration program. Many enter immediately upon completing their undergraduate work, while others have achieved significant positions in public management prior to applying.

Although most MPA students hold bachelor’s degrees in the social sciences, students with an undergraduate degree in any academic field are eligible for admission and encouraged to apply. Faculty, employers and program advisors often remark on the characteristics of the typical USC MPA candidate:

  • strong leadership abilities
  • good analytical and writing skills
  • an active curiosity and probing mind
  • an ability to aggregate numerous data points and complex interrelationships into concrete plans for significant action

MPA Student Characteristics 2013-2014

MPA Program Characteristics (On-Campus)
Total Enrollment 272
% Enrolled Full Time 82%
% Minority 36%
% International 32%
% Outside Southern California 52%
Average Age 28
Average Class Size (Core) 24
Average Class Size (Elective) 15
# New Students 134
GPA (interquartile range) 3.18-3.63
GRE (interquartile range) V 154-162, Q 150-163

MPA Program Characteristics (On-line)
Total Enrollment* 169
% Minority* 49%
Average Age* 34
# New Students** 80
GPA (interquartile range)*** 2.95-3.51
GRE (interquartile range)*** V 151-157, Q 145-151

* Spring 2014
** 2013-14 Academic Year
*** 2013-14 Entering Students