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Frequently Asked Questions


What are the application due dates?

Applications for all programs are accepted on a rolling basis. We are currently accepting and reviewing applications for all programs for Spring and Fall 2015. We review applications for the upcoming cohort in the order they are submitted, and communicate decisions typically within two weeks of the admissions interview.

For scholarship and financial aid consideration, we recommend applying as early as possible, as scholarships are also awarded on a first come, first served basis based on application strength. We recommend that you submit your application early to be eligible for scholarship awards.

What are the steps to apply to the MBA and MPA programs?

The first step in the admissions process is to complete the online application. Additional application materials can be emailed to the Admissions Department or mailed directly to Presidio Graduate School for review. Once we have received your application materials, we will set up an admissions interview with you either in person or via phone. Decisions are communicated typically within two weeks of the interview. Detailed instructions and application requirements can be found on the admissions requirements page.

How are the degree programs structured?
The MBA and MPA are both composed of a 60-credit curriculum with 15 required courses and one elective. Our hybrid in-person/online format allows you to attend full time (four courses per semester) or part time (two courses). Because our students meet in person only once per month for intensive residencies (see How do class schedules typically work? below), you can even fly in each month for residency at our San Francisco classrooms.

The programs combine the effectiveness of face-to-face learning with the flexibility of interactive distance-learning opportunities. Students have as much classroom time as a traditional MBA or MPA program. However, Presidio brings an additional level of value through a robust online component that develops essential management skills and facilitates virtual collaboration among students
What is the difference between the full-time and part-time degree programs?
Full and part-time students take the same courses, but they move through the program at a different pace. Full-time students are enrolled in four classes (15 credits) each semester, and complete the program in two years. Part-time students take two classes (alternating between seven or eight credits) each semester, and normally finish the program in four years.

Q: Once you start the program, can you switch between full-ime and part-time status?

A: Full-time students take 4 classes (15 or 16 units) per semester. Part-time students take 2 classes (7 or 8 units) per semester. Part-time students must complete a full year of part time status before making a change. PGS does not offer 1 or 3 class(es) per semester as an option.

Students may make no more than 2 changes in Program Status during their time enrolled at PGS. Requests for changes in Program Status must be submitted to the Registrar no later than 6 weeks prior to the first day of class. Final decisions regarding requests for changes in Program Status rest with the Dean of the Faculty.

How do class schedules typically work?

Students meet once per month for two or four eight-hour days during residency weekends, depending on whether they are part time or full time. Classes are held Thursday through Sunday for full-time students and Saturday and Sunday for part-time students. One class is held per day and runs from 9:00am – 5:00pm with an hour for lunch on Thursday and Friday, and from 9:00am – 5:30 pm with a 90 minute lunch on Saturday and Sunday.

In addition, every residency students and faculty are invited to a short program and community event hosted by the school on Saturday evenings.

What happens in between the residencies? How do I stay connected to my professors and my classmates?

The learning and the community building continues! Course syllabi outline weekly topics of discussion, reading and/or writing assignments, project assignments, webinars, and online collaboration. In addition, professors and teaching assistants are available to meet with students in person or via phone during office hours. Teams usually meet at least once a week either in person or virtually using Skype or Google Hangout.

Student-driven activities outside the classroom rival the intensity inside the classroom. From service trips to Chile, to our Presidio Presents speakers series, to our 12 sustainability-related student clubs, our students and faculty are out there making things happen.

Where do students stay during residency?

For students that travel to San Francisco, Presidio has preferred rates at a few hotels in the city for students who prefer to stay in hotels. There may also be the opportunity to stay with classmates who live in the Bay Area.

Where are MBA and MPA classes held?
Classes are held at 1 Beach Street in downtown San Francisco.

Do you offer a dual degree? Is there a different process for this application?

Presidio Graduate School offers students the ability to earn a Dual MBA/MPA degree in sustainable management. The Dual Degree is a 90-credit program of study. Candidates for this program simply select the Dual MBA/MPA program when completing their online application. The application process is the same.

In addition, current MBA or MPA degree students may apply during their first year of study to the Dual Degree program, and in their second year of study begin taking additional classes. The application process requires an updated admissions essay.

Is it possible to work and attend MBA or MPA classes at the same time?
You can, and most of our students do work in some capacity, though the choice is an individual one. For students in the full-time MBA, MPA or Dual Degree program, we recommend working on a part-time basis. It is not recommended for full-time students to also work full-time, although some students are able to manage both. For students enrolled in the four-year, part-time program, working full-time is manageable.

Full-time students typically have 40 hours per week of school work, and part-time students have approximately 20 hours per week of school work. Depending on your schedule and commitments, students are encouraged to participate in conferences, workshops and internships that will help you expand your network and gain expertise in your area(s) that you are passionate about.

How much do the degree programs cost?
For incoming, newly enrolled students, tuition is $1092 per unit. Full-time students pay $32,760 per year (30 credits.) Part-time students can expect to pay $16,380 per year (15 credits). This does not include books or administrative fees. See the tuition page for more details.

What types of scholarships and financial aid are available for the degree programs?
Presidio Graduate School offers several scholarships for both new and returning students. Please refer to our Financial Aid and Scholarships page for details. To be considered for any of our scholarships you must complete the FAFSA form with the Department of Education and opt in on your admissions application.

What does the MBA and MPA student body look like?
Students come from a wide variety of professional backgrounds, including Fortune 500 corporations, small and medium-sized businesses, nonprofits, and governmental agencies. While our students come from diverse experiences, they all share the values of sustainability and the desire to create meaningful work.

The average age of our students is 35 years old, with the ages of our students ranging from mid-twenties to mid-fifties.

What is the best way for me to learn more about the MBA and MPA Programs?

Attending an information session and/or going on a class visit gives prospective students the opportunity to experience firsthand our thriving educational community.

What are the steps to apply to one of the Certificate programs?

Students interested in our Certificate programs must fill out our application form and submit the same required documents as degree students. Application materials can be emailed to the Admissions Department or mailed directly to Presidio Graduate School for review. Once you are accepted to the Certificate Program, you will receive information on registering for courses and remitting tuition.

Do the Certificate courses contribute to the MBA, MPA or Dual Degree program?

Yes, they do.

How much do the Certificate programs cost?

For incoming, newly enrolled students, tuition is $1092 per unit. Depending on the Certificate and the number of units required, your total tuition due over the course of your program will be $7,644 - $17,472. Scholarships are not available for certificate students. 

Certificate Candidates are also subject to applicable student fees, and will be expected to purchase books for their courses.