Cornell Institute for Public Affairs- Cornell University

Why you should consider this program

Prepare for a career in public service at Cornell University, one of the oldest university partners of the Peace Corps in the country.  Earn your Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree at the Cornell Institute for Public Affairs (CIPA)—obtain foundational training in management, economic analysis, and quantitative techniques prior to specialization in one of eight concentration areas, including Economic and Financial Policy, Human Rights and Social Justice, International Development Studies, Public and Nonprofit Management, and Science, Technology, and Infrastructure Policy. Internship opportunities are available during the summer or academic year through one of our off-campus programs in Washington DC, New York City, Rome, or Mysore.  Take advantage of our unique professional certificate offerings in Environmental Finance and Impact Investing or Infrastructure Project Management and Finance.  Learn from a world-class faculty and alumni base spanning the globe.  Apply what you learn in practice through our clinical programs, which have developed consulting projects with a wide range of domestic (US) and international organizations including the Environmental Protection Agency, Government Accountability Office, the Inter-American Development Bank, and the United States Department of State.

Benefits for Coverdell Fellows

Tuition/fees for Complete Program Value of Coverdell Fellowship Net cost *
In state $ 73,974 $ 34,400 $ 39,574
Out of state $ 73,974 $ 34,400 $ 39,574
* Net cost is equal to tuition/fees minus fellowship value. For some universities, the fellowship value includes non-tuition/fee benefits such as health insurance or housing—see the first point below for more details.

Where the cost savings value of the Coverdell Fellowship comes from

50% Tuition Fellowship.

Fellowships awarded per year (average)


Other benefits or opportunities

Fellows are considered for summer internship funding to help support an unpaid internship.

Annual cost of living (estimated)

$ 21,000

Application fee waived?



Coverdell Fellows are required to work with an underserved American community.  These opportunities are available during the summer, during the academic year through our off-campus study programs in New York City and Washington, DC, or through our clinical programs. Examples of placements include Change for Kids, CityScience, DC Central Kitchen, District of Columbia Public Schools, Habitat for Humanity, the New York State Centre for Rural Schools, the Tompkins County Youth Services Department.  Internship placements are facilitated and monitored by CIPA’s Office of Career Services.

Jobs for program alumni

Consultant: Accenture, Bain, Booz Allen Hamilton, Community Counseling Services, Deloitte, Ernst and Young, International Monetary Fund, World Bank.

Financial/Program/Management Analyst: City of New Orleans, City of New York, Connecticut Green Bank, Credit Suisse, Fitch Ratings, Goldman Sachs, International Labour Organization, JP Morgan, McKinsey, RAND, US Department of State, US Government Accountability Office, US Securities and Exchange Commission.

Nonprofit Program Officer: American Civil Liberties Union, Anti-Defamation League, Brookings Institution, Center for Global Development, US Olympic Committee.

Other details

Program length

2 years

Application requirements

Online application, GRE scores, transcripts, statement of purpose, writing sample, resume, online interview, three letters of recommendation

Admissions process

Applicants must indicate they are applying through the Coverdell Fellows Program in their Statement of Purpose.

Please contact us directly at [email protected] to notify us that you are a PCRV and receive an application fee waiver.  You will be notified with your admission letter if you’ve been accepted as a Coverdell Fellow.

Program begins

Late August

Year Coverdell Fellows partnership started



Thomas O’Toole, Executive Director

294 Caldwell Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853