Welcome to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the Masters of Public Administration and Masters of Public Policy programs at McGeorge School fo Law. Here you will find information about:

  • Cost and Financial Aid
  • The public administration and public policy programs and the McGeorge School of Law
  • Curriculum and Requirements
  • Student Life

If you have a question that isn't answered here, please contact us.

Cost and Financial Aid

Each application to the MPA and MPP programs is automatically considered for scholarships. If accepted, the letter of admission will include details about the scholarship assistance McGeorge is able to offer. Most students receive a scholarship. Scholarship amounts are dependent on the strength of the application, the timing of the recruitment cycle, and other factors. For this reason, it is strongly encouraged that prospective applicants submit their application as early as possible to maximize the benefits which are available to them. Additionally, the McGeorge Financial Aid office is available to advise on Federal assistance programs, and other options available to graduate students.

Each semester, students pay tuition based on the number of units they are taking. Tuition for the 2021-22 academic year is $1,421 per unit. Fees for the Wellness Center and student activities range from $140 to $215 per semester. Finally, all students are required to have health insurance. If a student is not already covered under a health insurance plan, they will be required to purchase the student health insurance plan. Total tuition and fees for the 30-unit MPA degree is $43,490 and for the 48-unit MPP degree is $69,788 before accounting for scholarships and financial aid. MPP students typically receive somewhat higher scholarship awards due to the higher tuition cost of the degree.

All students are considered for partial tuition scholarships when they apply. In addition, federal student loans and on-campus work-study jobs are available for qualified students who complete the FAFSA.

Some federal loans can be partially forgiven if employed in public service.

McGeorge is proud to participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program.

The MPA/MPP Programs and the McGeorge School of Law

No, the ABA only accredits the JD degree at any law school, including McGeorge. The American Bar Association approved offering this degree through McGeorge School of Law by granting "acquiescence" In 2015. This allowed the MPA and MPP programs to be offered under the law school as well as allowing JD students to take public policy courses as electives.

McGeorge School of Law offers the JD, MSL, LLM, and JSD law-related degrees and two non-law degrees — the MPP and MPA. The public policy and law degrees complement and strengthen each other. You will take at least two law courses among your required courses and more for an area of concentration. Law students may enroll in public policy courses and some students will pursue both a JD and MPP or JD and MPA degree.

Through McGeorge’s dual-degree program, you can earn both the JD and the MPP or MPA with just one more year of study in addition to that required for the JD, but saving a year compared to pursuing both degrees independently. Admission to the JD program requires a separate application, and admission into the MPA or MPP program does not guarantee admission into the dual-degree program for the JD.

McGeorge School of Law has been educating lawyers in Sacramento since the 1920s. McGeorge alumni dominate lists of the 100 most influential attorneys in Sacramento and McGeorge alumni are leaders in state agencies, lobbying firms and non-profit organizations as well as law firms in Sacramento and beyond.

Members of our McGeorge family serve on nonprofit boards, provide pro-bono legal services, and participate as active community volunteers for dozens of local and national community outreach organizations. Students, faculty, staff and alumni contribute thousands of hours annually to support important community and charitable efforts.

Curriculum and Requirements

Our courses are typically comprised of 10-25 students. Classes are structured to allow for a working schedule, with most courses being offered in-person during the evenings or on weekends. While a few courses and individual class sessions are on-line, the vast majority of classes are taught in-person on our Sacramento campus.

In PUB classes, students engage in spirited policy discussions and learn about innovative management approaches from experienced professionals. Most assignments take the form of recognized professional work products, such as a decision memo, an analysis to be presented to a committee of the California state legislature, an issue brief or comment on a proposed regulation. Some assignments are individual, while others are based on team work.

No. Our Masters of Public Administration and Masters of Public Policy programs focus on practical professional skills. Instead of writing a thesis (a type of document you are unlikely to replicate later in your career) you'll participate in a capstone course. This capstone course requires students to construct a professional presentation on a major issue of public administration and/or policy by pulling together the knowledge and skills gained from all previous classes.

Externships are for credit and unpaid; internships are not for credit and can be paid.

Both public service internships and externships build on McGeorge's strong connections to government agencies, non-profits, advocacy organizations and private firms. These real world experiences are important components of the overall educational experience, which prepare students to effectively engage in complex and consequential public issues. Students who are not working professionally when they enter the program are encouraged to seek an internship or externship before the end of their first year.

Are you most interested in working with others to implement public policies? Do you like partnering with or managing others in direct actions? If so, the MPA, which emphasizes leading and managing competencies, is a good choice. Are you most interested in analyzing how to solve complex public policy issues, including how to identify and assess options for action? Do you like developing policy proposals and then getting them enacted into law or regulation? If so, the MPP which emphasizes analytic and policy making competencies, is a good choice. We would be happy to work with you in figuring out which program is a better fit for your strengths and needs.

Student Life

No state and few nations face the complexity and consequence of policy choices made and implemented in California. The campus, located just 10 minutes from the State Capitol, is at the epicenter of the offices of state, federal and local agencies, plus those of non-profits and advocacy firms focused on public policy making and implementation. This proximity ensures that our students are able to analyze, observe and engage in today's most critical issues.

Sacramento is also an excellent place to live, work, and play! CareerBliss rated Sacramento 1st for Happiest Workers in Mid-Sized Cities. Bloomberg Businessweek placed Sacramento 2nd in their Top 10 Most Fun, Affordable U.S. Cities. Sometimes referred to as the City of Trees, Sacramento has the most canopy coverage of any major city in the United States, and comes in 3rd worldwide (MIT, Treepedia).

University of Pacific’s Sacramento campus offers a variety of on-campus housing opportunities. To be eligible for on-campus housing, you must have been accepted for enrollment. On-campus housing is extremely popular, interested students are encouraged to submit a request as early as possible. Contact the housing office at 916.739.7119 or sachousing@pacific.edu.

Registered Student Organizations play in an integral role in the campus environment and educational process for McGeorge School of Law students. The many events hosted annually directly enhance academic and career preparation, cultural awareness, public service, leadership skills, and networking opportunities. With more than 30 Student Organizations, including the Public Policy and Administration Society, we encourage students to get involved and build relationships that will last a lifetime.