L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs

L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs


Prospective Students

Learn about specific admission requirements for the Wilder School. Walk-ins are welcome but we encourage you to schedule an appointment (phone or in-person) or arrange a campus visit to discuss your choices and determine the program that best fits your personal and professional goals.

Attend a "Why Wilder?" information session! Details here

Check on the status of your application
Upcoming Information Sessions 
Cost of attendance


Wilder School Request for Information

Want to learn more about the program and application process? Get in touch and request information with this form.


Financing your studies

VCU Financial Aid 

Wilder School Scholarships

Wilder School Graduate Fellowship

Wilder School Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) Program
A limited number of Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) positions are offered on a competitive basis to full-time students in our master’s and doctoral programs. GTAs work 20 hours per week with one or more Wilder School faculty members. The school pays for the GTAs tuition (not fees) and the student receives a financial stipend. Students selected as GTAs must be enrolled on a full-time basis. Individuals who are interested in a GTA position should contact their program chair.


Master's Degrees

Master of Science in Criminal Justice

Deepen your understanding of criminology issues and enhance your ability to affect public policy decisions, program evaluation and agency management within the criminal justice system.

Master of Arts in Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness

This online program equips you with theoretical and practical knowledge related to security and preparedness issues addressing all hazards, including terrorist threats and natural disasters.

Master of Public Administration (M.P.A.)

This program prepares professional public managers, public officials and citizens to meet the challenges of public service in both government and nonprofit sectors.

Master of Urban and Regional Planning (M.U.R.P.)

Gain professional grounding in the theory and methodology of planning through a curriculum that balances classroom and field experience. 


Doctoral Degree

Ph.D. in Public Policy and Administration

Prepares students for scholarly and leadership roles in settings including government, higher education and research organizations.

Graduate Certificates

Criminal Justice (15 credit hours)

Designed for those interested or involved in professions in the criminal justice system, this certificate facilitates career advancement to help you develop skills in criminal justice policy, program evaluation and management.

Gender Violence Intervention (15 credit hours)

Designed for pre-career and mid-career professionals, this program examines the social causes, consequences and responses to gender violence. Graduates often pursue careers in advocacy, research, policy or prevention.

Geographic Information Systems (12 credit hours)

Gain specialized training in operations and techniques related to the creation, analysis, modeling, visualization, interpretation and management of geographic information.

Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (15 credit hours)

Our online certificate program helps you develop managerial competencies in the homeland security and emergency preparedness field. Courses with grades of “B” or better are fully transferable to the master’s program.

Nonprofit Management (15 credit hours)

Gain a foundation in nonprofit management, including fundraising, law and ethics, financial management and governance.

Public Management (18 credit hours)

Tailored for government and nonprofit professionals, this program allows you to gain skills in public administration without pursuing a full master’s degree. An off-campus location is available in Chesterfield County.

Sustainability Planning (18 credit hours)

Available Spring 2019

Urban Revitalization (18 credit hours)

Learn the techniques and processes of city and neighborhood revitalization, including adaptive reuse of buildings, historic preservation, real estate market analysis and the role of private-public partnerships in financing development projects. Grades of “B” or better are fully transferable to the master’s program.

Graduate advising