You are here: Admitted Graduate Student Resources

Welcome to the School of Public Affairs Pursue Your Higher Purpose with SPA

Front of Kerwin Hall

Congratulations on your commitment to pursue an advanced skill set that will position you as a leader with purpose for our next generation and, moreover, prepare you to confront the most pressing public challenges of our time.

Admitted Student Checklists


✓ Celebrate your academic and professional achievements that led to your admission to one of the country's premier Public Affairs schools!

✓ Create an AU Student Account. Your AU Student Account will prove to be an integral resource for you as a graduate student. The platform is used for course registration, grade submission, financial account management, and other vital resources.

✓ Submit your FAFSA. American University's FAFSA code is 001434. The Office of Financial Aid (OFA) at American University will consider this information to consider you for Federal loan options. Questions may be directed to or 202.885.6500.

✓ Confirm your intention to join the SPA community by remitting your enrollment deposit. The $250US nonrefundable deposit is a tuition prepayment. You will see the deposit ultimately credited to your AU Student Account. Your deposit is required to hold your place in the incoming class, accept any merit aid that may be extended, and register for classes.

✓ After rendering your deposit, schedule an in-person or telephone meeting with your Graduate Advisor! It is time to begin developing your academic plan that will translate into your advanced skill set. New graduate student registration begins in late April.

✓ Access the new Graduate Student Checklist by following the navigation below:

  1. MyAU Portal Login
  2. Click on Life @ AU Tab
  3. Scroll down to "New Students" Tab
  4. Click "New Graduate Students" link
  5. Click "Start your Checklist"

✓ RSVP to SPA's New Master's Student Orientation by emailing Orientation should be considered mandatory designed as an important onboarding event as you begin your academic and student life at AU/SPA.

✓ Submit official transcript(s) showing successful completion of bachelor's degree before the first day of the semester. Please know failure to submit official transcripts may result in a hold being placed on your student account prohibiting course registration and/or merit aid allocation. If your transcripts are in a language other than English, certified English language translations must be provided. Mail to SPA Graduate Admissions, Office of Enrollment, 4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20016-8081, USA or email official e-transcripts to


✓ Connect and follow us on social media

✓ Make plans to join your new cohort at SPA’s JumpStart. This is an exciting initiative designed to “JUMPstart” your professional development, housing search, as well as exposure to an array of resources intended to support your student life at AU/SPA.

✓ Join us for an SPA CareerStart virtual session. The dates and registration information for the sessions is forthcoming.

✓ After submitting your deposit, you will be invited to join the 2018-2019 AU SPA Admitted Grad Students Facebook group. This offers a forum for you to get to know your new peers while engaging with our current Graduate Student Council (GSC) on issues like housing, internships, student life. The group is only open to students who have an email address.

✓ Visit American University's Off-Campus Housing site that offers access to living options in the area. The site also offers the opportunity to develop a student profile in an effort to identify potential roommates. Questions may be directed to or via telephone 202.885.2645.

Important Reminders

  1. Stay in touch...we are here to support you!
    Follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
  2. Use your AU email account only and always! All correspondence will now only be sent to your "" account. Please regularly monitor your inbox.
  3. Explore the portal. It contains a wealth of information that will inform and support your student life on campus.

Confirm your intention to join the SPA community by remitting your enrollment deposit. Enrollment deposits may be paid from the point of admission until a degree cohort is full.

Start: March 29, 2019 5:30 PM
End: March 30, 2019 5:00 PM


Start: April 11, 2019 11:30 AM
End: April 11, 2019 7:30 PM

Registration Close Date: March 22, 2019 and April 5, 2019

Join us for SPA Spring Engagement Day

The School of Public Affairs (SPA) will host two Spring Engagement Day events. The first date offers students a full, visit experience and the second offers an abbreviated version. Both dates offer a social reception for guests to engage with select faculty, administrators, current students, and peers. The March 30th date offers a full visit day on campus following the Friday evening reception, 9:00am-5:00pm (EST) while the April 11th date offers a half-day visit schedule followed by an evening Happy Hour. SPA's Spring Engagement Day(s) offer Fall 2019 admitted master's students an opportunity to explore academic fit, engage with faculty and their future peer network, as well as experience the beautiful American University (AU) campus and the excitement of Washington, D.C. The experience is sure to enable students the privilege to envision themselves as part of the robust AU and SPA communities.

The SPA Spring Engagement Day visit agenda(s) will include faculty current issue talks, departmental meetings with Chairs, Program Directors, and Academic Advisors, a career services and professional outcomes presentation, current student/alumni panel, as well as a session devoted to SPA’s merit aid strategy. (Again, please note the April 12th Engagement Day will offer an abbreviated agenda.)

All Fall 2019 admitted graduate students to SPA are invited to attend. Make your travel plans now to join us! More details including a detailed itinerary and travel logistics will be offered to registered participants closer to the event.


If you have received a SPA merit aid offer, you must accept the award by April 15th. To accept, you must submit a written response form, agree to the terms and conditions of the award, and pay your enrollment deposit. Questions may be directed to

Upon rendering your enrollment deposit, new graduate students should work with their academic advisor on degree planning. New graduate students begin registration for coursework in late April. Your academic advisor will offer you more detail related to the specific timeline and registration process.

SPA JumpStart (All Master's Programs)

Start: Thursday, June 20, 2019, 9:00 AM (EST)
End: Friday, June 21, 2019, 5:00 PM (EST)

Registration Close Date: June 13, 2019

Join us for SPA JumpStart 2019

The School of Public Affairs (SPA) will host SPA Jumpstart that will offer a robust agenda spanning two days on the beautiful American University (AU) campus. The agenda will be designed to cater to all of SPA’s traditional, master’s degrees and will “JumpStart” new students’ academic, professional and social engagement in graduate student life. The agenda will offer career development panels and workshops, an academic component, campus resource fair, housing bus tour, current student/alumni panel as well as a special, culminating social reception. SPA's Jumpstart offers Fall 2019 enrolled master's students an opportunity to further engage with: SPA faculty, staff, and current as well as incoming students; campus and community resources; and their new Washington, D.C. home. The experience is sure to jumpstart the incoming cohort’s pursuit of a profession of purpose!

All Fall 2019 enrolled SPA master’s students are strongly encouraged to make plans to attend. More details including a detailed itinerary and travel logistics will be offered to registered students closer to the event.


Please hold the date for mandatory international new graduate student orientation. The registration process and draft agenda are forthcoming.

Please hold the date for mandatory new graduate student orientation. The registration process and draft agenda are forthcoming.

August 26, 2019: Fall 2019 Classes Begin.