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Higher Education Administration Admissions

Application Information for the Master of Arts Degree and Advanced Graduate Certificate Program

How to Apply

All applications are created and submitted via our online application portal . Once you are in the portal, you will be prompted to select either our master's or certificate program, in a traditional or online format. You should select "Traditional" if you plan to enroll in most or all face-to-face courses (online courses may also be taken). Select "Online" if you plan to only enroll in online courses during the course of your program.

You don't have to have all of your materials gathered before you start your application.

*Please be advised that the School of Professional Development has shifted most of its courses into an online format for the Fall 2021 term. If you have any questions about how courses will be conducted in the upcoming term, please consult with the program director.

We encourage all applicants to review SPD's Admissions FAQs if they have questions.

Deadline Dates

SPD accepts applications on a rolling basis,   with three admit terms a year – Fall, Spring and Summer. Applications submitted by the dates listed below will be granted priority review. Completed application packages received after this date will be accommodated as space permits.

If an applicant's package is missing materials and cannot be reviewed for the upcoming term, the application will be held for processing for the next admissions cycle.

Priority Deadline Dates

Domestic Students:

  • Summer:May 1
  • Fall: August 8
  • Spring: January 1

International Students:

  • Fall: March 1
  • Spring: November 1


Application Materials 

The following required materials are to be submitted through our application portal:

  1. Personal Statement. Please attach a personal statement of 750-1000 words that is your own original work and addresses the following questions:  
    • What is your purpose in pursuing a Master of Arts or Advanced Graduate Certificate in Higher Education Administration (HEA)?
    • Why do you wish to be a part of the HEA program at Stony Brook University?
    • How have you prepared yourself for a career in higher education? (Include any relevant undergraduate, graduate, or professional experience.)
    • Specifically, how will the HEA degree/certificate assist you in advancing both your professional and personal goals?
    • Describe your research and study interests and any other aspects of your background, skills, or qualifications that would aid the HEA Admissions Committee in evaluating your motivation for graduate study.
    • If there is an academic performance or other weakness in your application that you wish to address, please include this in your personal statement so that the HEA Admissions Committee can make an informed decision.
  2. Essay. Please attach an essay of 750-1000 words that is your own original work and addresses the following question: What are three critical issues facing colleges and universities today? Your essay should reflect high quality writing skills and demonstrate your ability to pursue graduate level work. The HEA Admissions Committee will review your essay on the basis of content, sentence structure, organization, critical thinking and analysis. You may consult and include outside resources in your essay, but if you do, you must include citations in the text in APA format as well as a reference page with the author's name, year of publication, and title of publication. 
  3. Resume. Upload a resume that includes degree(s) earned, employment history, and past/current leadership, volunteer, or other relevant involvement and experience.
  4. Two letters of recommendation. Letters of recommendation should be from employers, colleagues, teachers, or professors with whom you have worked or studied that can speak to your experience and interest in pursuing studies in Higher Education Administration. Submit the names and email addresses of the recommenders on your application and they will be contacted. Do not collect paper or digital letters as there is no way for you to upload them into the application system.
  5. Official transcript. The official transcript must indicate conferral of a bachelor's degree.  Applicants who are currently enrolled in an undergraduate degree program should submit a current official transcript.  Applicants who have prior or current graduate level work may submit official transcripts, but are not required to do so unless requested by the HEA Admissions Committee. If your institution does not support electronic delivery,  contact the HEA program for instructions.
On-Campus Student Requirements

If you plan to take to take any face-to-face classes, you must complete and submit the  immunization/meningitis form to Student Health Services.  This form must be received before the first day of class of your first on-campus term. Visit the Student Health Service website  for more information.

International Student Requirements

International students may only apply for the MA, not the AGC. There are additional requirements for international applicants or those for whom English is not their primary language. » View details.

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Contact Information

Andy Fong, Admissions Counselor
Higher Education Administration Program
Stony Brook University
2321 Computer Science Building
Stony Brook, NY 11794-4434
Tel. (631) 632-7759


Stony Brook University/SUNY is an affirmative action, equal opportunity educator and employer. Effective January 1, 2016, Stony Brook University is  100 percent tobacco-free.