University of San Diego - Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies

Why you should consider this program

Located at the world's busiest international border, the Kroc School offers academic programs for the purpose-driven peacebuilders, social innovators and positive changemakers of today. With three top-ranked programs and the only dual degree of its kind, the Kroc School is home to a renowned institute and center, world-class faculty practitioners, immersive learning experiences, seed funding and research opportunities and a growing, global alumni network.

The two-year, interdisciplinary Master of Arts in Peace and Justice (MAPJ) is designed to transform passion into change. Through local and international field-based courses and an internship, students are trained as practitioners with the theoretical grounding, skills and tools to address social justice challenges and to promote and advance peace.

Quick Facts:

  • First stand-alone school focused on peace and justice
  • Students come from 30 countries in 5 continents 
  • Network opportunities with high level speakers from around the world
  • Practice based curriculum for real world application
  • UN partnership 

We're looking for creative problem solvers and leaders who, with the right education and guidance, will advance peace and justice wherever they choose to work. Come join us!

Benefits for Coverdell Fellows

Tuition/fees for Complete Program Value of Coverdell Fellowship Net cost *
In state $ 48,000 $ 24,000 $ 24,000
Out of state $ 48,000 $ 24,000 $ 24,000
* 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

  • Application waiver
  • 50% of tuition waved
  • 6 units of Peace Corps experience toward degree

Fellowships awarded per year (average)


Other benefits or opportunities

  • Scholarships. All full-time program applicants are considered for Named Scholarships, such as the Darling-Andreu Peace Scholarship, the Dolores k Juditz Endowment Fund, the Paulus Peace Scholarship, and the William Headley Endowed Scholarship, in addition to the Dean’s Graduate Merit Scholarship.
  • Federal Work-Study (FWS)/College Work Opportunity Program (students must apply for Financial Aid by filing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and be offered FWS).
  • Graduate Assistantship. All students may apply. Value is $1,200 for 40 hours of work per semester applied toward the cost of tuition.
  • Practice Fellowships at Kroc School’s Institute for Peace and Justice (Kroc IPJ). All students may apply. Value is $5,000 in tuition support plus a stipend for 15 hours of work per week.
  • Internship Program Funding. All students may apply to receive funding to offset internship expenses.
  • USD Graduate Grant Award. In addition to merit awards and named scholarships, the University of San Diego awards USD Graduate Grants, a need-based scholarship, after a graduate student is admitted.

Annual cost of living (estimated)

$ 16,650

Application fee waived?



Students who are pursuing a Master of Arts in Peace and Justice have a 10 week internship requirement in order to graduate. Students are responsible for finding their own internships, and will need to complete at least 250 hours in order to receive credit.

Each master's student is paired with a faculty advisor who offers mentorship and guidance throughout the internship process, including helping you choose an organization that best fits your interests and career goals. Through our internship program, you could gain experience in:

  • Monitoring and evaluation 
  • Human rights documentation 
  • Conflict analysis 
  • Mediation and negotiation 
  • Project design and management
  • Grant writing workshop and training facilitation 
  • Public speaking 
  • Researching, analyzing and drafting policy documents
  • Communications: press release writing, website design 
  • Cultural competency 
  • Teamwork

Jobs for program alumni

With every graduating class, the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies challenges our students to go out into the world to make change. And our alumni do not disappoint. From ESL teachers to company CEOs, Field Representatives to Foreign Affairs Officers, Community Security Specialist to International Trade Specialist, our alumni are pursuing careers that position them as leading changemakers.

A degree from the Kroc School offers graduates world-wide career opportunities where you can transform ideas into action for impact. Whether you are interested in working in the non-profit, corporate, government, education, health or government sectors, your Kroc School education, including extensive opportunities for practical experience, will make you a valuable contributor to your chosen field and to your community.

Other details

Program length

2 years, Full Time

Application requirements

  • Online application for admission:
  • Official sealed transcripts from degree granting institution
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Resume or C.V.
  • Four short essays
  • (International applicants have additional requirements)

Admissions process

Please email [email protected] to obtain an application fee waiver. Be prepared to provide proof of your service. When you are informed of whether or not you have been admitted into the MA program, you will also be informed if you have been accepted as a Coverdell Fellow. 

To qualify for the Coverdell Fellows Program students must be enrolled full time. 

Program begins

Early September

Year Coverdell Fellows partnership started



Kroc School Admissions, Coordinator: Hilary Beggs

KIPJ 122
San Diego, CA 92110