The non-thesis Master of Agricultural and Applied Economics (MAAE) is a professionally-oriented degree designed to prepare graduates for a wide variety of careers in the private sector, including as economic consultants, commodity traders, analysts, or in the public sector with government agencies and international organizations. Students will choose one of four specialty training areas that fit their interests and career goals:
Food and Agribusiness
Agricultural Markets and Finance
Sustainability Policy and Management
Trade and Development
Core courses will train students in advanced microeconomics and econometrics, and additional quantitative tools such as data science and system optimization.
This master's degree can be completed as a stand-alone master's degree or, for University of Illinois undergraduate students only, a combined bachelor plus master's (4+1 MAAE). The 4+1 MAAE combines the ACE Bachelor's of Science, and it can be completed in five academic years, including a summer internship. The standalone MAAE is designed to be completed over a 1 to 2 year period based on the student's interests and ability to take partial to full course loads during each semester of study; it is open to any student with a bachelor’s degree that meets the program admission criteria.
Professional Internship or Research Apprenticeship
Students will work with advisors to successfully complete a professional internship or research apprenticeship as part of the program requirements.
The professional internship experience is typically completed the summer after coursework requirements are met. It could also be completed during the fall or spring semesters, or in the summer prior to the first fall semester of classes for the MAAE program. However, students may find the internship experience more enriching after having completed some, or all of their graduate coursework.
Program advisors will support students in their internship preparation, professional network building, and to identify opportunities, while students will be responsible for successfully interviewing, landing, and completing the internship.
Who Should Apply
You should apply to this program if you:
Are interested in a career in the private sector, including as an economic consultant, commodity trader, analyst; or
Are interested in a career in the public sector with government agencies and international organizations; and
Have a strong background in math, microeconomics, and statistics;
Want to complete a master's degree in a shortened timeline and without completing a research thesis;
Desire to gain hands-on work experience tailored to your career interests;
Are prepared to competitively enter the job market after earning your master's.
How to Apply
Spring cohort: October 15
Fall cohort: January 15
*We will continue accepting and reviewing applications after the above dates, but for full consideration, please submit all materials by the deadlines above.
Apply through the Graduate College of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (https://grad.illinois.edu/admissions/apply) and be officially accepted into the Graduate College, making sure to include the following elements via the formal application:
Select the “MAAE” Option on the application;
Personal Statement (400-500 words);
The personal statement should summarize your qualifications, outline your reasons for applying to the program, and describe your career objectives. This should reflect your professional interests specific to the MAAE program.
Official post-secondary academic record;
Include courses taken, grades earned, and degrees awarded. Unofficial transcripts meet this requirement.
Names and contact information for three references;
At least two of your references should be familiar with and in a position to comment on your academic record and potential for success in a graduate program.
GRE test scores (optional);
If you choose to submit your test scores, do so directly from the Educational Testing Center, ETS is who administers the GRE and TOEFL.
Institution code: 1836
Department code: 0101