The Higher, Adult, and Lifelong Education (HALE) Student Affairs Administration (SAA) Master’s Degree Program at Michigan State University provides future student affairs professionals the knowledge and skills to work with students and to cultivate educational environments promoting diversity and multiculturalism.
In the MSU SAA MA Program, we believe higher education has not achieved equity for all groups, and part of our responsibility in the student affairs profession is to move higher education closer to equity and justice. We also acknowledge and celebrate the multiple, intersecting identities of students, instructors, and program staff. Therefore, within the program, we aspire to create an inclusive environment that supports individual and community learning in the context of a sense of belonging and commitment to the holistic development of individuals and our community.
We do this work by embodying critical considerations of diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice (DEIJ) across curricular and practical experiences. Looking outward to MSU, the field of student affairs, and the higher education ecosystem, we aspire to create and undertake educational experiences that equip SAA graduates to take up the challenges, injustices, and opportunities of higher education.
About the SAA MA Program
In our program, graduate students gain a broad perspective of higher education systems from social, historical, and global perspectives. Highlights of the program include:
- Thirty-six (36) credit hours completed over 2 years (full time)
- Eight (8) core courses and 4 electives
- An in-person cohort model enrolling 15–20 students per year from across the U.S. and abroad
- One (1) required practicum experience
- Graduate assistantship opportunities across various student affairs functional areas
- World-class faculty specializing in higher education and student affairs
- Graduate certificate options, including the HALE graduate certificate in Teaching & Learning in Postsecondary Education
- The SAA Forum, providing professional and academic development opportunities
- Opportunities to gain teaching experience, including through mentored teaching apprenticeships
Prospective students interested in applying to the SAA MA Program should visit our Application Information webpage to review application requirements and learn more about our program. The deadline to apply for Fall 2024 is Friday, December 1st. For additional information about the SAA MA Program, review the links under the HALE Menu on the right side of this page and consult our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).
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What Our Students and Partners Say About Us
“My decision to pursue the SAA MA Program at Michigan State was made much easier due to the amount of acceptance and belonging I felt while going through the admissions process and attending Spartan Preview Days (SPD). During SPD, I saw first-hand how the program’s cohort model provides a support network and community of like-minded individuals who lift each other up and support one another’s accomplishments. This community has made such an impact on my experience as I progress in my education and pursue all of the opportunities the program offers.”
–Dallin Perkes, SAA MA 2nd-year student,
SAA MA Program Outreach & Recruitment Coordinator
“For more than 70 years, the Michigan State University Student Affairs Administration program has led the field in preparing future Student Affairs professionals. Faculty, comprised of leading scholars in the field, provide graduates with a solid foundation to be top-notch practitioners. The Division of Student Life & Engagement provides graduate assistantships and practica experiences to enhance the classroom learning experience. We believe our graduates are prepared to be leaders, scholars, and contributors to advancing knowledge and transforming lives.”
–Vennie Gore, Senior Vice President
for Student Life and Engagement
What SAA Faculty Say About Teaching Future Professionals
“Teaching graduate students as they prepare for a career in student affairs provides eternal hope that we can…and must…be better as a field and as student affairs educators.”
—Dr. Patricia Marin, Associate Professor, Coordinator, SAA MA Program
“One of the best parts of my job is the opportunity to see the future of the field in and through the students in MSU SAA. And that future is BRIGHT!”
—Dr. Kristen Renn, Professor,
Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies for Student Success Research
“One of the important roles I play is helping SAA graduate students to understand they don’t just make a difference in the lives of students, they ARE the difference. Student affairs professionals do exceptionally valuable work to make a difference in the lives of college students who, in turn, will change the world.”
—Dr. Matt Wawrzynski, Professor, Coordinator, Teaching and Learning in Postsecondary Education Graduate Certificate Program
“I love working alongside the many talented student affairs professionals in the SAA program to reimagine how we can collectively transform colleges and universities into equity-minded, liberatory communities of learning.”
—Dr. Justin A. Gutzwa, Assistant Professor
AMONG THE BEST
FOCUS ON THEORY-TO-PRACTICE
Our program helps students connect theory-to-practice through immersive field experiences, teaching and research opportunities, invited speakers, and more.