Announcement from the Ford School of Public Policy

Master’s applications are now open for fall 2021

The Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy has opened applications for fall 2021 for our top-ranked graduate programs: Master’s of Public Policy and Master’s of Public Affairs.

The Ford School community is engaged in public policy at a critical time in our world’s history. The challenges—pandemic, rising inequality, climate change, refugee crises, a rancorous political landscape, and so much more—are complex. And so our opportunities for impact are enormous.

We are looking for students who are eager to lead, to find creative solutions, and to take on our communities’ and our world’s most pressing challenges.

Applications are due January 15, 2021.

How to apply

The application is available online through the Rackham Graduate School website. Review our application checklist for detailed information. You will need:

  1.     An academic statement of purpose about your professional and academic goals
  2.     A personal statement
  3.     Your resume
  4.     Three letters of recommendation
  5.     Transcripts

Recognizing the disruptions and hardships many are experiencing in the context of COVID-19, the Ford School will not require GRE scores from students applying to enroll in its master of public policy program for fall 2021.

Beth Soboleski, associate director of Student & Academic Services, says that in a typical year, “GRE scores are useful indicators of academic preparation for our core curriculum. But the COVID-19 pandemic has made it difficult for many promising students to prepare for and take the GRE.” Applications without GRE scores will not be disadvantaged in the Ford School’s holistic application review process, Soboleski notes.

View additional information for International applicants and dual degree applicants on our website.

More questions? See our FAQs for master’s applicants or contact us at

Get to know us

Attend one of the upcoming virtual graduate school fairs or schedule an individual appointment with a member of our admissions team. And follow us on social media to get a better feel for all the news and events happening at the Ford School.

Why choose the Ford School?

We are a top-ranked policy school located within one of the world’s premier research universities—in one of America’s best college towns. Our rigorous curriculum prepares graduates to shape policies that affect their neighborhoods, their countries, and people around the globe. Our prominent and accessible faculty are world-class scholars—and also enthusiastic teachers and mentors. And we believe in a hands-on approach that provides practical policy experiences that help our students become better leaders.

We look forward to welcoming the next cohort of smart, engaged leaders to our community!

NOTE: This announcement was first released on October 2, 2020.