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Whether your end goal is to work in the public sector, the private sector, or for non-governmental organizations, the SWM program equips you with the skills, knowledge, and experience for an impactful career as a water professional.

Due to COVID-19, the SWM Program will have a delayed start in Spring 2021. The deadline to apply for this term is October 1, 2020. The GRE Requirement is waived for this round.  Join us for our next webinar for more information!

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Requirements and Application Checklist

As a true interdisciplinary program, applicants to the M.S. Program in Sustainable Water Management have a B.A./B.S. in a variety of backgrounds, spanning from the physical sciences to the social sciences. Work experience in a related field is considered desirable, but is not required. Students are selected based on their academic background, related work experience, and their passion for the field. Applications are submitted through the Tufts University Health Sciences website, where you will have the option of selecting the Friedman School (our host school) and the Masters of Science in Sustainable Water Management program. The application fee will be automatically waived during this application period. Our application requires:

  • Academic Transcript
  • Resume
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Two essays: 1. A Personal Statement 2. A short essay in which you will choose one of two prompts.
  • GRE score (waiver available, please follow procedure below)*
  • Minimum TOEFL score of 90 or IELTS score of 6.5 for applicants who are not native English speakers and who do not have at least 3 years of English instruction in secondary school.

GRE Waiver Procedure*

For students who believe they have sufficient proficiency in the GRE exam areas based on past academic performance, please contact us to obtain the GRE Waiver Form. This waiver should be submitted AFTER completing the SWM application to  Following submission of the application and the GRE Waiver, the selection committee will review the request and contact you if the waiver has been approved or if exam scores are needed for an admission decision.

*Please note: Due to COVID-19, the GRE requirement is automatically waived for the Spring 2021 cohort.

Essay Topics

In addition to the required personal statement, applications should choose one of the following:

  1. Provide an example of a challenging problem you have overcome in your work and how you achieved it.
  2. Describe a time when you led a program, project, or a team in an academic or professional setting. Describe your role and explain how you were successful in your position. Describe the challenges you faced: how did you overcome these challenges, and what leadership skills do you possess that helped you?

Application Deadlines

Applications for admission for the next SWM cohort are due on October 1, 2020. Following a review period, applicants will be contacted regarding their admission status. Due to COVID-19, the program will delay its start to January 2021. For questions regarding admissions, please contact


Additional deadlines for the Fall 2021 cohort will be made available soon. Join us for our next webinar here!

Tuition and Financial Aid

Costs and Fees

A detailed list of the costs and fees associated with enrolling in the SWM degree is shown in the table below. The total cost of tuition, fees, and cost of living is approximated based on the 2020-2021 academic year.

Financial Aid

SWM degree applicants are considered for both need- and merit-based financial aid. In addition, all SWM degree students are granted up to a $3,000 stipend to support a summer internship or research project. Once you arrive on campus, there are many further travel and research grant opportunities available to you to make the most of the SWM degree program.

Tuition $51,500
Student Activity Fee* $390
Technology* $396
Health Insurance* $3,300
Health Admin Fee* $872
Housing (Approximate)*  $15,256
Total*  $71,714

*Estimations are based on 2020 academic year. Exact fees will be posted before the new academic year.

Life at Tufts

The SWM Degree is housed at the Tufts Institute of the Environment, located at the university’s Medford/Somerville campus in the greater Boston area. Students who attend have all the benefits of living in close proximity to a thriving cultural, social, and academic center while still attending classes in a quiet and residential city. Tufts University combines a rich history of research and academic achievement with a warm setting of curiosity and engagement that creates an environment where students can thrive. Most graduate students find housing in the surrounding Medford and Somerville area, preferring to live primarily off-campus, though there is limited on-campus housing available. For more information and resources about off-campus housing and renting, please visit the Graduate Student Life page. Once at Tufts, graduate students can enjoy a rich community of ambitious and dedicated peers. There are a number of graduate student groups and organizations that students are welcome to explore and contribute to the rich Tufts experience. Students are also given access to the various recreational and athletic facilities, the West Hall GSC Lounge, and the libraries and academic centers on the Medford/Somerville campus.

Webinar Info Sessions-Save the Date!

Join us for our upcoming webinars in September by registering here! The following webinar dates are currently available:

  • September 15th, 2020 at 9:30AM ET
  • September 16th, 2020 at 1:00PM ET

Application deadline: October 1, 2020

Additional webinars will be made available. For more information, please contact and check back for new webinars in Fall 2021!