Jun 25, 2022  
2017-2018 Graduate Catalog (As of 08-20-17) 
2017-2018 Graduate Catalog (As of 08-20-17) [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Environmental Studies, M.S. and Public Administration, M.P.A. Concurrent Master’s Degree Program

Annette M. Watson, Program Director, Environmental Studies

Philip H. Jos, Program Director, Public Administration


Program Description

The Master of Science in Environmental Studies and the Master of Public Administration programs offer a concurrent degree program that allows students the ability to attain two master’s degrees in three years rather than four. This program is aimed at preparing students for professional level positions in public organizations that address environmental issues.

Mission Statement

The mission of the MPA - MES program is to prepare students to lead and manage environmental programs and organizations through rigorous training in the science of environmental studies and the administrative and leadership knowledge and skills of public and nonprofit service. The MES program provides students with an interdisciplinary approach to identify environmental problems without sacrificing the training rigor of a specific academic discipline. The interdisciplinary emphasis is established through a carefully designed set of required courses that provide students with an understanding of environmental issues.

The curriculum addresses these issues by teaching students the principles of basic scientific research; by giving students the tools to evaluate the human dimensions of environmental problems and potential solutions; and by helping students examine the role of public policy in environmental decision making. The public administration mission is to prepare public service leaders. Upon graduation our students will have the ability to think critically and creatively about public issues, the dedication and capacity to serve a diverse community and the skills to enter a professional position in a public organization. As a professional program the M.P.A. provides the applied skills necessary for upward mobility in the public service sector.

To accomplish our mission, our program provides the following: 

  • A rigorous core curriculum that combines applied learning with an examination of the theoretical underpinnings of public service and offers concentrated areas of study in arts management, environmental policy, nonprofit management, and urban and regional planning;
  • An environment that nurtures a commitment to service; 
  • Opportunities to support collaboration and the creation of partnerships among communities and public service organizations.

Admission Requirements

Institutional Requirements

  • A completed application form with a nonrefundable application fee of $50.
  • Official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate coursework. An earned bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university is required.
  • International applicants should refer to the International Students area within the “Admissions Information”  section of the catalog for information on providing appropriate documentation with the application.

Program Requirements

Admission to the concurrent program requires a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution. Applicants from any undergraduate discipline are encouraged to apply. Minimum requirements include:

  • Overall undergraduate GPA of 3.000 (on a scale of 4.000)
  • Official scores from GRE test with a minimum composite score of 305 and 4.0 analytical writings.
  • Must have undergraduate coursework in biology (two courses with labs), chemistry (two courses with labs), statistics (one course) and American government (one course). One year of another physical or natural science may be substituted for either biology or chemistry
  • Three letters of recommendation that specifically address the prospective student’s academic qualifications and career potential in environmental studies and public administration.
  • A statement of personal career goals to be achieved by the student applicant during his/her time in the program.

Admission decisions will be made by the admissions committees in both programs. When decisions are mixed or an applicant appeals, both program directors must agree to admit the applicant to the joint program. Students currently enrolled in either the MES or MPA program are eligible to apply to this program.

Application Deadlines

  • Fall: March 1, Priority; July 1, Final
  • Spring: November 1
  • Summer: March 1

Transfer Credit Policy

Students may seek approval from the admissions committee to transfer in 9 credit hours of courses equivalent to those offered by Environmental Studies, or 12 credit hours of courses equivalent to those offered by Public Administration, but in no case more than 12 credit hours total for their program of study in the Concurrent Degree Program. These courses require a grade of B or higher, or a grade of Satisfactory or Pass.


An advisor will be assigned based on the student’s program of interest. Students are expected to meet the standards of both programs as addressed in the Student Handbooks.


Program Requirements
Student Learning Outcomes