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Master of Public Administration

College of Arts and Sciences

Want to make a difference by pursuing a career in public service? That's what the Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree enables you to do. MPA graduates work in government at all levels, in the non-profit sector, and in public sector consulting. They work on domestic and international issues: education, the environment, healthcare, housing, transportation, defense, homeland security. They work as administrators, policy analysts, budget analysts, program managers, and many others. MPA alumni are worldwide, serving great causes and making a difference in many ways.

Graduates are solving problems, creating new ideas and helping others all over the world. An MPA degree builds your professional management abilities to develop cross-cutting and transferable skills. These professional tools give you real world applications in order to solve challenging situations of all types. If you're seeking a versatile masters degree that gives you the foundation to make a true difference, then the MPA degree is for you.

The MPA is a professional degree program that integrates the theory and real world practice of public administration to prepare you for work in the public or nonprofit sectors. Students enter the program from a wide variety of undergraduate majors and backgrounds. Full-time students usually complete their 36-39 semester hours for the MPA program in 18-24 months.

This highly marketable degree produces leaders who have the skills and passion to become effective administrators in the public sector. Despite the economy's up and downs, demand remains high for skilled and trained public administration professionals.  Let our program strengthen your future.

The MPA program at ETSU offers a core of classes and three distinct concentration areas:

  • Economic Development and Planning
  • Local Government Management
  • Nonprofit and Public Financial Management

This is an interdisciplinary program which has two broad objectives: (1) to develop the managerial and technical skills necessary for the effective administration of urban and social services, and (2) to develop a professional understanding of the values and social conflicts inherent in creating and administering public policy. This program provides a basic preparation in the skills and concepts that are necessary to deal with the challenges and issues relevant to urban public policy and public service management careers.

Over 90 percent of our MPA alumni are currently employed in some aspect of public administration. Over two-thirds of those positions are in urban administration. Approximately a third of the alumni are city managers or municipal administrators. Others hold positions as planners, financial and personnel officers, federal and state civil servants, lead non-profit organizations, or work in the private sector.

During the course of your studies you will enjoy many unique opportunities such as meeting current city managers, planners, politicians, and other public professionals. Other opportunities include attending meetings and conventions of professional organizations (such as the American Planning Association and the International City/County Management Association), interning with a wide variety of organizations and municipalities, and networking with peers in this and other similar programs.

The MPA program is a hands-on educational experience. Within this interdisciplinary course you may pursue classes and activities offered in a number of cooperating academic departments. What you get from the program will be in direct proportion to what you put into the program.

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