This blog offers you information on getting started in the CSSA program. Each page on the site offers helpful information, links and words of wisdom from past and current CSSA students.

What is CSSA? 

The CSSA program is a master’s program housed in the College of Education at Oregon State University. The program’s primary mission is to prepare individuals for professional administrative positions in student services departments at two- and four-year colleges and universities. The curriculum emphasizes administrative leadership and management of programs and services. Included in these programs and services are:

  • residence halls and student housing
  • enrollment management (admissions, orientation, and financial aid);
  • career services
  • college unions
  • student and co-curricular activities
  • recreational sports
  • international programs
  • individual and group advising
  • general student affairs/services
  • other student and academic support programs

Graduation from the program requires successful completion of at least 54 credits of graduate-level coursework in the major field of study (CSSA) and a minor or area of specialization which is chosen by the student. Completion and presentation of a capstone portfolio (Ed.M. degree) or a thesis capstone (M.S. degree) during the final year is also required.

History of CSSA

To learn more about CSSA, its history and the nine competencies of CSSA, please visit the CSSA website.

Introduction to the Cohort Model

The dictionary defines “cohort” as a companion or associate. Your cohort members will be your companions on your journey through the CSSA program. Most cohort members find that they make lifetime friends through their shared experience as well as forming a professional network of colleagues.

The “cohort model” means that incoming students enter the program all at the same time and generally take required classes together. CSSA uses a cohort model for many reasons.

  • Your cohort may help to normalize the transition experience and act as a support group.
  • The model encourages shared and deeper learning through the diverse experiences each member brings to the group.
  • It’s practical!  This way classes can be offered once each year.

To meet current students in both cohorts, please click here.

CSSA Weekly Email

Every week there will be a CSSA Weekly Email sent out to all students, faculty, and staff within the CSSA program highlighting CSSA information, professional development opportunities, job opportunities, and internship opportunities. If you identify as a current CSSA student, and are not receiving this weekly please email


You can address your questions to


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