Dear Prospective Student,

Prospective Students

Established in 1914, the Ford School remains known for the strengths that have marked our reputation for decades: the excellence of our faculty; the firm grounding of our degree programs in social science research and quantitative analysis; the vitality of our research centers; and our strong connections with scholars, programs, and opportunities from all parts of the world-class University of Michigan. We are proud to be a small, collegial community, a school where students matter.

We are committed to tackling the critical policy challenges facing our cities and our nations. Our shared passion for public service is evident in the real-world policy issues woven through our curriculum, in our research and its application to public policy, and in the careers of leadership and impact forged by our alumni.

For those eager to lead—eager to find solutions—we offer a rigorous, interdisciplinary, applied professional education.

Please contact us with questions or browse the pages of our graduate recruitment brochure or undergraduate brochure for more information.

We welcome your interest.

Susan M. Collins's Signature
Susan M. Collins,
Joan and Sanford Weill Dean of Public Policy


Why Public Policy?

When you choose a career in public affairs, you choose a path of leadership and service. You choose to be an active participant in public decisions—decisions that affect your neighborhood, your community, your country, and people around the globe. You choose to analyze problems, seek solutions, collaborate for change, and advocate for your community.

The Ford School Tradition

A Ford School public policy degree will prepare you to lead and effect change in a broad range of public service roles. Our graduates develop creative and sound solutions that advance the goals of public policy. They are adaptable and respond quickly to our ever-evolving social, economic, and political landscape. Our graduates are effective leaders who empower, challenge, inspire others, and shape the world in which we live.

At the Ford School of Public Policy, you will:

  • Share in our outstanding legacy of training leaders in public service—dating back to 1914, when the University of Michigan established one of the nation’s first institutes for public administration.
  • Gain access to the immense academic and research resources of the No. 2 ranked public university in the U.S.—including some of the best programs in the social sciences, and world-renowned faculty.
  • Become part of our community of scholars and practitioners committed to serving the public through the pursuit of advanced degree work that will equip you for leadership in public policy analysis and public management, and to excel in social science research that will shape the world in which we live.
  • Benefit from the Ford School’s distinctive interdisciplinary approach to public policy education that will allow you to explore concentrations in areas such as social welfare, international trade, international development, economic policy, and non-profit and public management, to name a few.
  • Learn effective ways to evaluate and address public policy issues through a balanced emphasis on quantitative analysis, research, and hands-on training in community settings.
  • Join a tradition of alumni who have achieved tremendous success in a wide range of public policy fields, such as: government, international organizations, non-profit and community organizations, and in academia or in research organizations (“think-tanks”).

What our Alumni Have to Say

Don’t just take our word for it.

Click here to discover in-depth testimonials from Ford School alumni who are out in the field, working in all sectors of public policy in the U.S. and around the world, and who credit much of their success to their exceptional experience at the Ford School.