Apply to the MDP Program

The MDP program is a 2-year program that starts each fall semester. We recommend that students attend the program full time but do accept part-time students. 

We are currently accepting applications for Fall 2022. We will begin to review applications on January 17, 2022. For inquiries please contact

Note that fellowships and other forms of financial aid may have earlier deadlines. It is the responsibility of individual applicants to meet these deadlines. We encourage Returned Peace Corps Volunteers to apply through the Coverdell fellowship.   

We do not require GRE scores for admission. 

MDP Frequently Asked Questions

How to Apply

Please note that application fees cannot be waived or refunded for any reason. 

To apply, you must complete the University of Arizona Graduate College online application. Follow these steps:

  1. Create a GradApp account
  2. Complete your GradApp profile under "My Account".
  3. Select "Apply to a Program" from the sidebar.
  4. Choose "Degree Seeking" under application type and "Development Practice (MDP)" under program of study.
  5. Choose the semester during which you wish to enter the program.
  6. Your application should now be initiated under "My Active Applications."

There is a non-refundable application fee for degree-seeking domestic applications of $85, international applications are $95, and domestic, non-degree seeking applications are $45. 

Application Materials  

Statement of Purpose

You will upload a Statement of Purpose as part of your online application (no more than 3 pages single spaced), indicating the academic and professional goals you hope to achieve in pursuit of this program of study.

Your Statement of Purpose should explain: 

  • How and why you came to the decision to pursue a degree in development practice, including your background, interests, experience, and skills; 
  • Your career goals in development and the fields of specialization you are considering (health, environment etc.); and 
  •  Why you wish to pursue your MDP at the University of Arizona. 

Letters of Recommendation

You'll need a minimum of two letters of recommendation. Enter contact information for your referees in the online application. Your referees will be contacted directly by the University of Arizona.

Preferably one letter should come from a faculty member at your undergraduate or graduate institution who can evaluate your academic performance. The other recommendation should come from a work supervisor who can attest to your experience, interests and skills as they relate to the field of development.  


Transcripts from all colleges and universities you have attended or are currently attending are required. Photocopies of unofficial transcripts should be uploaded with your application. You will submit official transcripts, later on, before you can be officially admitted by the Graduate College.


Your CV/resume should detail your educational history, employment, internships, community or volunteer service, leadership experiences, languages, written publications (reports, articles, institutional materials, etc.) and any other relevant skills. It should include dates, institutions and locations for each item.

English Language Proficiency (International Applicants)

Upload Photocopies of TOEFL scores.

See Graduate College requirements for international students.

Acceptance and Enrollment 

Once all materials are received, and the review committee has made its admission decision, you will receive formal acceptance information from the Graduate College. This letter includes information about enrollment. Please note that placement in the program is not guaranteed until the student completes enrollment. Proof of immunization or waiver is required. At this time, you will need to send official copies of your transcripts directly to the Graduate College. 

International students cannot register for classes until they attend the International Student Orientation. 

Contact Us

Do you have any questions about the application process? Please contact us at