Tuition and Financing

Tuition and Fees

Tuition for 2017-2018 academic year will be approximately $24,000 per semester. Total costs, including university fees, books, room, board, transportation, medical insurance, and other personal expenses are estimated to be $111,253. Please visit the School’s website for a more complete list of tuition and fees.

Funding Sources

Program Fellowships
The program awards the Dean’s Fellowship in Environmental Science and Policy – a full-tuition grant and Earth Institute Internship, valued at about $80,000. The program also awards numerous partial-tuition fellowships, which typically range from $5,000 to $20,000. In rare cases, partial fellowships may be as high as $40,000. In 2017, the average fellowship was nearly $18,000. All fellowship awards are based on academic merit and financial need. A fellowship application is included in the application for admission. Students who apply by one of our two fellowship deadlines — November 1 and January 15 — are automatically considered for fellowship funding. The program awards this funding without regard to citizenship.

Earth Institute Internships
Students may apply for paid internships in the Earth Institute, and in environmental organizations that participate in the Earth Institute’s Internship Program. The hourly rate of internships within the Earth Institute is $15, and students may work up to 20 hours a week. Hourly rates and the number of work hours vary for internships at organizations off campus. Students should express interest in Earth Institute internships as part of their application.

Course Grading Assistantships
Students may also apply for a limited number of course grading assistantships. Students in these positions perform administrative functions associated with the instruction of courses, including the grading of homework assignments and exams. Students in these positions earn $5,000 – $6,000 per semester.

Federal Financial Aid
Applicants to the program who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents are typically eligible for federal Stafford student loans up to $41,000 for the length of the program as well as Work study. All interested applicants must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which is available online at The School’s Title IV code is 002707. Students are strongly encouraged to submit their FAFSA forms at the beginning of January. For more information, please contact SIPA’s Office of Financial Aid.

Information about additional sources of financial aid to international students, including external fellowship support and private educational loans, is available on the website of the School of International and Public Affairs.

Yellow Ribbon Program
The MPA-ESP program offers student veterans a maximum contribution of $20,000 under the Yellow Ribbon Program. The contribution, which is matched by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, is the highest offered by programs and schools at Columbia University. The MPA-ESP program makes contributions on a first-come, first-serve basis. Prospective student veterans, who seek support under the Yellow Ribbon Program, must apply for admission by January 15.