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Public Administration, MPA

The Masters of Public Administration (MPA) program prepares students for careers in public service with local, state, and federal government agencies and nonprofit organizations. Through this program, students develop the knowledge and skills needed to become service-oriented public officials. A large alumni network in nearby Harrisburg and Washington DC provides invaluable networking and career connections.

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What Will I Learn?

The MPA courses focus on general public management theory, techniques, and skills, while emphasizing a practical approach to public administration. Students may also take advantage of experiential learning opportunities through internships, field research, and elective courses.

Classes in Shippensburg and Harrisburg

The MPA program is a 36-credit program, which they may complete during eight-week sessions within an academic semester and five-week sessions during the summer. Students can earn their MPA at their own pace within one to two years. Students who have full-time managerial employment in a relevant profession may apply for an internship waiver worth three credits when applying.

What Kinds of Experiences Could I Have?

You may choose to pursue involvement with professional organizations. Central Pennsylvania has an active chapter of the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA), the professional association. ASPA regularly hosts educational and networking events in the Harrisburg area, and MPA students often become chapter members, board members or officers. MPA students are leaders in the Public Administration Student Association, the campus professional development organization. Shippensburg University's Pi Alpha Alpha, the public administration academic honor society, is a NASPAA National Chapter of Excellence Award winner.

What Types of Careers Could I Get With This Degree?

Our graduates work in:

  • Policy-making positions with the legislative, executive and judicial branches of the federal and state government
  • Local government
  • Not-for-profit agencies
  • The private sector


Public Administration, M.P.A. Degree Plan

Full-Time (36 Credits)

First Year

Fall Semester: 9 Credits


Spring Semester: 9 Credits


Second Year

Fall Semester: 9 Credits


Spring Semester: 9 Credits


Planning Notes for all students:

  1. 36 total credits required
  2. All students must take all the the required core courses: PLS 503, PLS 502, PLS 603, PLS 501, PLS 605, PLS 603
  3. The remaining 4 courses (18 credits) are electives. See program for list of electives: Public Administration, M.P.A.  
  4. Students can being in any semester or term, including, fall, spring, winter or summer.
Contact the Political Science Department 424 Grove Hall, 1871 Old Main Drive, Shippensburg, PA 17257 Phone: 717-477-1718