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Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to complete the program?
The HEA program is a full-time residential experience. Summers are usually spent gaining field experience, but it is not necessary to earn credit during the summer to graduate with 36 credits in two years.

How many students are in each cohort?
There are around 30 students in each cohort every year.

Is an interview required for admission?
No, you only need to submit your free application. All admitted students will get the chance to meet the faculty and learn more about the HEA program at Masters Visits Day in February.

What is the average age of incoming students?
The average age of incoming HEA students is about 25 years old..

When will I receive my admissions decision?
Look for your admissions decision email and letter in early to mid February!

What are the specialized courses of study within the program?
Students choose one of three tracks at the end of their first semester: Enrollment Management, Student Affairs, or General Administration and Policy. Descriptions of each track can be found on the Prospective Students page.

Can I create my own specialization?
Yes. Students who wish to concentrate their studies on a specialty outside of those offered may work with their adviser and the program director to create an individualized course of study within the general higher education policy and administration track.

What opportunities are available to gain work experience?
Professional experience can be acquired in a practicum, work-study, or graduate assistantship position. Information on how to apply for assistantships will be provided after you've been admitted.
 

Is there a comprehensive exam?
Yes, students must pass a comprehensive take-home exam in February of their final year.

How many full-time HEA faculty teach in the program?
We have seven full-time faculty members in the program.

How do I go about finding housing in Nashville?
We recommend using the Off-Campus housing referral service, found here: https://apphost2.its.vanderbilt.edu/studentbiz/OCReferral/. Students have also found housing via Craigslist, local listing sites, and referrals from current students.

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