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The joint or concurrent degree track is an opportunity for MPP, MPA/ID or two-year MPA students at Harvard Kennedy School to earn two professional graduate degrees in a shorter amount of time by reducing their coursework and residency requirements. In recent years, about 25 percent of HKS students have pursued joint or concurrent degrees.
Typically, students complete their degrees in one year less than if they earned them consecutively. For example, it normally takes four years for a student to earn an MPA and a business degree separately – two years for an MPA and two for an MBA. When pursued concurrently, however, this student will earn both degrees in three years.
This challenging degree track is rewarding but it is not for everyone. Combined degree students commit themselves to degree programs at two different institutions, and may only graduate when they meet the requirements for both degrees.
Students interested in the combined degree track must apply and be admitted to both Harvard Kennedy School and a professional graduate school either at Harvard or at another approved academic institution. Admission to one degree program does not guarantee admission to the other.
Chris Hurst, MPA-ID/MBA 2013, Director of Risk Management, Mercy Corps
"The HBS-HKS joint-degree program gave me a fantastic peer and faculty network…a chance to dive deeply into big problems, with people who are passionate about solving them…a chance to develop friends from all over the world, who have done incredible things…a chance to feel challenged, and inspired…to risk, to fail, to win…to build new tools in organizing others…to explore a career shift… three of the best years of my life."