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The Accelerated Master of Public Policy Degree Path

The Thomas Jefferson Program in Public Policy offers an option whereby a small number of current W&M undergraduates will be able to earn both a Bachelor's degree and a Master of Public Policy degree in a total of five years of coursework.  They will undertake a collaborative research project with a faculty supervisor in the summer following the junior year (sample research paper), and will be supported with a mix of tuition waivers, tuition reductions and research assistantships during the fifth year, when only MPP courses will be taken.  Exceptionally qualified students may be named Trice Fellows, and receive full tuition remission and generous stipend support for their postgraduate year in the program.

The details – Application Process:

Students apply for the five-year BA/MPP option in the junior year.  Admission is highly competitive, and successful applicants will have done well in any Public Policy, Economics, and Government classes that they may have taken.  Applicants must have earned at least 90 undergraduate credits with a 3.0 overall GPA (or a 3.3 junior year) and a 3.3 in their major by the end of the spring semester of their junior year to be eligible for the program.

The application consists of: 

  • Graduate Arts & Sciences application (application fee waived) including:
    • personal statement
    • current transcript
    • 3 letters of recommendation, one of which is from the faculty member who has agreed to serve as the summer research project advisorA 250 word summary of the proposed summer research project
    • A proposed class schedule for the fourth year that illustrates how the student will complete his or her undergraduate degree (major requirements and GERs), and comply with the scheduling requirements of the joint program (as detailed below). 

The Trice Fellowship program gives preference to projects addressing international issues.  Applicants for the Trice Fellowships should clearly state this in the application, and an international orientation in the course of study, the project, or both must be apparent.  

The deadline for applications is February 1 and students will be informed of their acceptance into the program by March 15.

The details – Once admitted to the BA/MPP  

For more information:

Elaine McBeth, Associate Director
Thomas Jefferson Program in Public Policy
221-2386, mcbeth@wm.edu