A student affairs event in the Carlow University Commons


Helping Students, Engaging Communities

Student affairs professionals can affect the success of individual students and even the culture of an entire campus, sometimes both in a single day. They must be able to work one-on-one with a student with ease, while also having the ability to inspire entire communities.

In the Master of Arts in Student Affairs, students become practitioner-scholars, fostering growth and success in college communities. The program offers a foundation in counseling and theory, while elective options allow students to explore interests that supplement their studies. Students will be able to pursue interests in working with LGBTQ, first-generation, and students of color. In addition, students can pursue other specific areas such as addictions, trauma and crisis response, advanced counseling, and management.


Carlow University undergraduate students from all majors are invited to apply to Carlow's Master of Arts Degree in Student Affairs prior to graduation.

Juniors and Seniors admitted to this program are permitted to take up to nine graduate credits while they are still undergraduate students. 

This opportunity can save students time and money. This option is ideal for students aspiring to get a master's degree in student affairs or a dual degree in both student affairs and professional counseling. Doing well in this accelerated program can also demonstrate your graduate-school readiness for other programs. To stay in the program, students must maintain a 3.0 average in their graduate coursework.

Formal admission to the program begins your Junior year. In order to enroll in STA courses you must:

  • Have Junior or Senior status
  • Achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.0 while at Carlow
  • Meet Carlow residency requirements (completed a minimum of 15 Carlow credits)

The courses offered in the Accelerated program have been pre-selected as optimal for undergraduate students. To be given graduate credit, all graduate courses must be passed with a B- or above. These nine credits will also be counted toward the 120 credits needed for the undergraduate degree and will be concurrently posted on the graduate transcript. Graduate courses will count for graduate credit only if the student earns a B- or higher; graduate courses will count for undergraduate credit even if the student earns a C+ through D-.

The Accelerated Program in Student Affairs includes the following courses:

  • STA 703: Foundations of Student Affairs
  • STA 704: Relational Practice and Leadership
  • PRC 701: Human Growth and Lifespan Development
  • PRC 705: Helping Relationship
  • PRC 702: Social & Cultural Foundations

Three undergraduate courses serve as prerequisites for specific STA courses under the Accelerated STA curriculum:

  • PY 122 Lifespan Development or SW214: Human Behavior in the Social Environment are prerequisites for the graduate course PRC 701 Human Growth & Lifespan Dev.
  • PY 285 Introduction to Counseling or SW 302 Social Work with Individuals are prerequisites for the graduate course PRC 705 The Helping Relationship
Special note: STA 703 is a prerequisite for STA 704

Additional qualities that are not required but will elevate the likelihood of acceptance to the program include:

  • Work experience as a resident assistant or field experiences or student committee work in student affairs (e.g., student activities, admissions, registrar’s office, etc.)
  • Other student leadership or community service leadership experience.
  • Research experience.
  • Strong writing skills.
  • Strong performance in undergraduate coursework (3.3 or better).
  • Strong letters of recommendations.
  • Membership in your discipline’s honors society (e.g., Psi Chi, etc..)
Final and full admission to the STA may be granted upon completion of the undergraduate degree from Carlow.

To apply to the Accelerated Master of Arts Program in Student Affairs, students should complete an application here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/9HKMZSC