How We Consider Applicants
We base our decision on a holistic review of all application components—your past academic history, work experience, written and video essays, test scores, and letters of reference. Because context matters, we consider how your background, experiences, aspirations, values, and accomplishments enable you to bring a unique perspective to the classroom and add to the diversity of the NYU Wagner community.
WHAT WE LOOK FOR IN ALL CANDIDATES
Strong Academic History
We carefully review your transcripts, test scores, and academic letter(s) of reference to assess your academic aptitude and overall preparedness for graduate study. We welcome students from all majors and backgrounds and look for some demonstration of aptitude for both quantitative and qualitative course work. If your undergraduate curriculum did not include quantitative course work, we strongly recommend that you take the GRE or GMAT to demonstrate your quantitative abilities.
Demonstrated Commitment to Public Service
We prepare public service leaders to translate ideas into actions that have an effective and lasting impact on the public good. Our most successful applicants demonstrate—through relevant coursework, work experience, internships, or research—a deep commitment to public service and a desire to tackle today’s most pressing challenges. We welcome career changers, and we look to see what other volunteer or pro bono work can serve as evidence of your commitment to doing work of public importance.
Potential for Impact
NYU Wagner’s curriculum and extracurricular activities are geared towards training and supporting the next generation of public service leaders. During the application process, we seek candidates who have demonstrated an ability to make a positive impact in their surroundings, no matter how big or small the scale.
ADDITIONAL EVALUATION CRITERIA
MPA AND MUP APPLICANTS
We value professional experience from all sectors and fields. We believe that professional experience helps students ground their studies in real experiences, enriching discourse and learning in the classroom. We consider internships, volunteer work, pro bono and contract work, full-time and part-time positions as part of your professional background. The average NYU Wagner student has two to five years of experience.
Strong Quantitative Ability
The MSPP is a rigorous and intensive program open to applicants from a range of academic backgrounds. The MSPP does not require prior quantitative training; however prior course work in introductory statistics, first-year calculus, or introductory economics is recommended. MSPP applicants must submit GRE or GMAT scores as part of their application.
Ability to Think Critically about Policy Issues
An ideal candidate for admission has the ability to bring logical, pragmatic thinking to bear in solving problems, as well as the ability to write clearly and coherently.
EXECUTIVE MPA APPLICANTS
Substantive Leadership and Managerial Experience
EMPA students are either rising leaders or already in an executive position, and come from diverse backgrounds in the public, nonprofit, and private sectors. Executive applicants are expected to have a minimum of eight years of work experience, with increasingly progressive management and leadership responsibility.