University of California, Riverside

School of Public Policy

 MD/MPP Concurrent Degree Program

at home in the world

The Master of Public Policy (MPP) program at the University of California, Riverside prepares idealistic students like you for careers in government, politics, and public affairs within public, non-profit, or private sectors.

UCR Master of Public Policy Program

Launched in the Fall of 2015 and with degrees conferred to its inaugural cohort in Spring of 2017, the Master of Public Policy (MPP) degree offered by the UCR School of Public Policy will teach you to think globally and act locally, applying what you learn at UCR to solve the problems that have been plaguing our region for decades. We will train you in evidence-based, pragmatic policy-making to address these problems.

As an MPP student, you can choose to specialize in a broad variety of fields. Specialization can take the form of a concentration within coursework, in the capstone project, in one’s internship, or in any combination of these.
Concentrations are available in the following policy areas:

  • Environmental and resource
  • Health
  • Education
  • Urban
  • Inequality and poverty
  • Race and immigration

  • Learn How to Apply

    Fill out my online form.


    "Public policy and public opinion go hand-in-hand. My job is to understand and shape both. In the areas of elections, business programs and political reform, I work to ensure Californians have access to the information they need, when they need it. My MPP trained me with the tools and techniques to be effective in that goal."

    -Jesse Melgar, Class of 2017 (Inaugural Cohort), California Deputy Secretary of State,
    Chief Communications Officer


    “I chose UCR’s MPP program because of its flexibility for working professionals and its small class sizes. When making the decision to return to academia, I wanted to make sure I was making a wise investment. This meant selecting a university that had the resources to prepare me for a competitive workforce, in addition to being affordable and accessible to students.”

    -Amber Bolden, Class of 2018, Graduate Teaching Assistant, WRCOG Fellow


    “Earning an MPP degree before medical school gave me the perspective necessary to understand the complexities of the health system and see the consequences of poor policy. The MPP program broadened my perspective and gave me unique opportunities to pursue my passions.”

    -Evan Finlay, Class of 2017 (Inaugural Cohort), Doctor of Medicine (anticipated May 2021)


    "My two years in the MPP program at UCR were an extremely challenging time, but it equipped me with the knowledge and confidence to work in the public sector. I learned how to conduct and analyze research, expanded my writing skills, and practiced my public speaking skills immensely. Electives and class projects allowed me to go into detail with specific policies of interest. I utilized my time as a graduate student to get more involved as a social justice organizer on campus, as well. UCR is a dynamic place to learn and I deeply value my experience in the program."

    -Moureen Ahmed, Class of 2017 (Inaugural Cohort)


    "The promises of a graduate diploma attract a variety of learners for a variety of reasons. For me, applying to the Master of Public Policy (MPP) program seemed like a natural extension of my experience as a UCR undergraduate in the same major. Like so many students, I wanted more specialized education and training to make me more competitive –to better understand and mold practices and potential policy outcomes for regional constituents.

    What I didn’t anticipate was the regionally-contextualized and diverse information from classmates and intentionally-selected faculty that made my graduate experience more well-rounded and practical than other programs could offer. World-class faculty that seek to train their students to think critically and systematically about difficult societal challenges broadened my perspectives and cultivated passion for the power of local policy—work that affects the lives of the 4.5 million people who reside in the Inland Southern California region. The UCR MPP program provided training in research methods, foundational policy knowledge and elective topic training to ensure relevance and preparedness in pursuit of academia or professional careers."

    -Annalisa Wurm, Class of 2017 (Inaugural Cohort)

     Admissions Criteria

    • We are looking for socially-motivated and idealistic students, both domestic and international, to be part of our next MPP cohort. The program is open for fall 2018 admission to applicants who have successfully completed:
      • undergraduate courses in microeconomics, statistics, and an introduction to politics and government, or equivalent courses. (Please note that a student may still be admitted with course deficiencies. Contact our office for more information).
      • a bachelor's degree (or an approved equivalent from an accredited institution) with minimum 3.0 GPA

    More Information 

    General Campus Information

    University of California, Riverside
    900 University Ave.
    Riverside, CA 92521
    Tel: (951) 827-1012

    Contact Information

    School of Public Policy
    Anil B. Deolalikar
    Founding Dean
    Professor of Economics

    Student Affairs
    Tel: (951) 827-2334

    Dean’s Office
    4133 CHASS Interdisciplinary South
    Tel: (951) 827-5564

    Related Links