Sanford School of Public Policy

USD 10,000 - USD 58,944 loan size

up to 20 years loan term

Courses we support

Dual Degree(MBA/MPP)

About the school

With several graduate degrees available in public policy and international development policy, the Sanford School of Public Policy is one of the top public policy schools in the country. It was established in 1971 as the Institute of Policy Sciences and Public Affairs by Terry Sanford, the former governor of North Carolina and president of Duke University. The school is a community of excellence dedicated to creating knowledge and leadership to improve policy issues. Also, Duke Sanford is domestically and internationally renowned for its policy participation, teaching, and research.

The diverse community of students, instructors, and staff shares the Sanford School's mission. Because of the nature of public policy, the school benefits from the diversity of their viewpoints, disciplines, and personal experiences. They can work together and feel a strong sense of community. Each person living in Sanford is dedicated to supporting these ideals and ensuring everyone is welcome.

Where is the school located?

The Sanford School of Public Policy is located in the vibrant city of Durham.

Life at the Sanford School of Public Policy

At the Sanford School of Public Policy, the faculties and student organisations care about the wellness and well-being of the students. Student organisations such as the MPP Student Council, MIDP Student Council, Public Policy Majors Unions, Duke Interdisciplinary Social Innovators, Duke Sanford Africa Policy Group, and Graduate Professional Student Council help students feel at home. In addition, the school hosts PridePol - an LGBTQ organisation, to promote inclusivity and diversity in its environment. It also has a forum for professionals and students to contribute to the current policy sermon through insightful and innovative solutions.

Housing & Residence Life greatly emphasises the on-campus residential experience at Duke University. This presents a fantastic opportunity for students to interact with new people and explore different cultures and ways of life. Students must reside in Duke housing during their tenure at the university, subject to certain conditions, like space being available each term. Most housing options on the Duke campus allow students to live with people of either gender as their next-door neighbours or housemates. When applying for housing, students can choose whether they want a roommate of a similar gender and neighbours of the same gender. They can also choose between single or double rooms, subject to availability.

Duke Dining provides students with over 50 different options for eating, including Merchants-on-Points, 33 on-campus restaurants, and food trucks. Duke Dining offers a community-driven, environmentally friendly, award-winning service throughout the academic year. They provide culinary education and involvement opportunities through access to cooking classes, nutrition and wellness events, chef demos, and special-themed dinners.

Additional benefits of studying at the Sanford School of Public Policy

The Sanford School of Public Policy aims to improve lives and communities by addressing the most pressing public policy challenges and preparing students to become leaders who engage in civic activities and public service. The school offers opportunities for students to get involved in research activities, including recreational activities. Students have the chance to assist faculty and researchers with their projects, which they can later add to their resumes.

Durham campus



City Population

5.2 million


Eastern Piedmont


Humid, subtropical climate

Nearest Airport

Newcastle Airport (NCL)

Time Zone

Eastern Standard Time (EST)

Fast facts

  • Type of University: Private University
  • Number of countries represented: 19+

Admissions criteria

Between early September and the deadline on January 5th, applicants should interact with the admissions team, finish and gather the required application materials, and proactively get in touch with their 3 potential letter writers to allow them enough time to write their recommendations.

  • Apply on the school’s website
  • Complete the personal information form
  • A personal statement written by the applicant
  • A letter of recommendation from an employer, academic, etc.
  • The applicant's undergraduate transcripts, translated into English
  • Proof of proficiency in English (TOEFL - 100, IELTS - 7.5, Duolingo - 140)
  • Resume/CV
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • Application Fee (this depends on the programme and school)

Other costs which are not consistent throughout school admissions information online:

  • Health service/health insurance: $3,700 approximately
  • Cost of Books/Course Materials: $330 approximately
  • Food and other expenses: $1,800 approximately
  • Housing: $5,800 approximately
  • Transportation: $870 approximately

  • The submission of GRE scores is optional for students.

International students should submit their application through the school's official website and provide the following documents:

  • The applicant's undergraduate transcripts, translated into English
  • Proof of proficiency in English (TOEFL - 100, IELTS - 7.5, Duolingo - 140)
  • Proof of proficiency in a local language (country-specific)
  • Resume/CV
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • Application Fee (this depends on the programme and school)

Other costs which are not consistent throughout school admissions information online:

  • Tuition and fees for international students: $26,400 approximately
  • Health service/health insurance: $3,700 approximately
  • Cost of Books/Course Materials - $330 approximately
  • Food and other expenses - $1,800 approximately
  • Housing - $5,790 approximately
  • Transportation - $870 approximately

Job placements

The Sanford Career Services Team assists graduate students in finding jobs and internships that match their unique interests, backgrounds, and talents in the policy field. They help students with resume building and reviewing, career exploration, internship research strategies, LinkedIn profile reviews, negotiation, networking, professional development, and more. They also host career fairs and one-on-one counselling to help the students understand what an actual interview would look like.

Students can use Handshake to register for career fairs, and network with potential employers, students, and alumni to expand their career opportunities.

Prodigy Finance international student loans

Prodigy Finance offers borderless financing to international students. There is no need to provide guarantors, collateral, or cosigners. Furthermore, there are no hidden fees! Our loan facilities include no penalties for early repayment and a 6-month grace period after graduating from full-time study.

Realise your dream with a Masters programme from Duke University - Sanford School of Public Policy

Learn more about Prodigy Finance - if you have further questions, you can also join a webinar, visit our FAQs, or chat to a student mentor about their study abroad experience.

Source: Duke University - Sanford School of Public Policy

Last updated: 10 Nov 2023

The purpose of this page is to provide prospective students with basic information about the school and a selection of Courses offered by the school. Whilst we have carefully compiled the overview, Prodigy Finance does not accept any liability for any inaccuracies mistakes, omisions or outdated information in the guide and we encourage prospective students and other readers to consult with the schools's website for further information. Prodigy Finance does not have any affiliation or contractual arrangement with the school. If you are a student and need more information about applying for a loan, please contact us at Any other other queries about this page can be sent to

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