About the Program
Teaching public service values on campus and online.
The Master of Public Administration program is part of the Department of Political Science and Public Administration located within the Nistler College of Business and Public Administration at the University of North Dakota.
The mission of the MPA Program at the University of North Dakota is to develop public service values and to prepare people to enter into or advance in government and related fields.
The MPA degree has two tracks:
- Health Administration
- Social Administration
UND also offers 12-credit certificate programs:
- General Public Administration
- Policy Analysis
- Health Administration
- Social Entrepreneurship
Certificates may be earned concurrent to the MPA program and within the 34 credit hour MPA credit requirement. Students earning any of these certificates may apply up to 12 certificate credit hours toward their MPA degree, if later admitted into the MPA program.
Credit Hours & Modes of Delivery
Credit Hours: 34 Credit Hours (12 Classes)
We offer our program in a synchronous hybrid delivery mode. Campus students and online students take classes simultaneously and in real time. Many of our classes emphasize breakout group work and there are significant interactions between the two peer groups.
Financial Aid & Assistantships
Financial aid information is available through UND's One-Stop Student Services.
A limited number of Graduate Service Assistant (GSA) positions for MPA students are awarded through the College. GSA positions are typically quarter time and require a commitment of 10 hours of work per week. GSA applicants must be admitted in approved or qualified status and must be enrolled on campus.
The MPA Program at UND requires an application form, payment of application fee to the School of Graduate Studies, three letters of recommendation, official of transcripts, a statement of goals and objectives, GRE scores, and TOEFL score, if applicable.
Applicants must have demonstrated minimum competence in public administration, administrative sciences, and methodology. This competence is normally demonstrated by at least one course in each of five fields (Political Science, Accounting, Economics, Management, and Statistics), by special exams in the fields, or by practical experience.
The MPA at UND is accredited by the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs and Administration (NASPAA). The program was first offered in 1976. Through most of our history we have offered both a local program and a distance program, always offered in a live real-time format, whether delivered by faculty traveling to the distant site, through interactive video, or, currently, through synchronous internet-assisted delivery.
How Long Does the Degree Take?
The time to completion of degree varies, depending on factors such as student employment status and part time / full time enrollment status.
All core classes are offered yearly, giving students flexibility. A full time student admitted in the Fall Semester can progress through the program in 4 semesters (2 academic years), taking 9 credits for their first three semesters and 7 credits in their final spring semester. Full time students can typically complete an MPA degree with a Health Administration or Social Entrepreneurship track in two academic years. Spring admission, elective health administration and social entrepreneurship tracks, as well as additional certificate specializations may affect time toward program completion due to course sequencing and a reduction of elective flexibility (especially for part time students).
- It is strongly encouraged for students to map out a program of study with the Office of Graduate Programs to ensure a timely and efficient path to program completion.
MPA Program Mission Statement & Objectives
- The MPA Program seeks to prepare its students for public service by developing and supplementing the following:
- Skills related to critical and analytical thinking, decision-making, and communication.
- An understanding of:
- The theories and practice of public management, and the design and analysis of public policy.
- The public context in which public administrators work, including the institutions, actors, processes, functions, challenges, and responsibilities of government.
- The ability to practice effectively as an administrator in public, non-profit, or healthcare organizations.
- A recognition of, and appreciation for, the role of diversity in public service delivery.
- The MPA Program seeks to serve North Dakota by educating future State and community public service professionals and through the research activities of the Bureau of Governmental Affairs.
- The MPA Program faculty are dedicated to:
- Excellence and innovation in teaching.
- Student service and mentorship.
- Serving the community, North Dakota, and profession through teaching, service and scholarship.
- Conducting research that is relevant and accessible to both practitioners and academics, and has the potential to improve the practice of public, nonprofit, and health administration.
MPA Program's Values
Through the above mission goals and objectives, the University of North Dakota's MPA Program seeks to promote an appreciation and respect for the following public service values in its students:
- Dedication to service in the public interest.
- Personal and professional ethics and integrity.
- Pursuit of quality, performance excellence, and the efficient and responsible use of resources.
- Promoting accountability by striving for transparency, accuracy, and accessibility.
- Promoting, respecting, and upholding principles consistent with the democratic process, the rule of law, and/or U.S. and state constitutions, such as equality, fairness, representativeness, and due process in protecting rights.
- Opposition to discrimination and harassment.
- The exercise of compassion and empathy in service delivery.
Student Body Statistics
In Fall 2018, 36 MPA students are enrolled in the program.
Our students also benefit from certificate student enrollment and from our partnership with the Master in Public Health program in the School of Medicine and Health Sciences.
Ten MPA students and six certificate students matriculated in Fall 2018. Of the MPA students enrolled during the 2017-18 academic year, 62% were from out-of-state, 9% were international students, 22% were persons of diversity, 51% percent were female, and 75% were part-time.
Entering Class of 2018 by the Numbers
- Acceptance Rate: 100%
- Average Age: 33
- Female: 70%, Male: 30%
- Overall Matriculation Rate: 90%
- On-campus: 60%, Online: 40%
- Average GPA: 3.26
- Caucasian: 80%
MPA Advisory Board
The MPA Board is charged with taking an active responsibility for the advancement of the University of North Dakota's MPA Program. The Board will help to build the program for the future through personal commitments of time. The success of this board requires members to be actively committed, influential, and willing to encourage other public leaders to support the efforts of the program.
- Diligently attend board meetings, equipped with information on past meetings and current program and advancement activities.
- Work closely with other Board members to establish and maximize working relationships within the board and in the public service community at large.
- Commit seriously to the work of the Board as a whole and to specific strategies and initiatives for the advancement of the program.
- Share unique expertise in public service trends with the MPA Director in order to ensure the program curriculum provides the knowledge and skills necessary for future student success in the workforce.
- Promote alumni relations by engaging and building relationships with MPA alumni within the public sector of Grand Forks, North Dakota, the region, and the public sector at large.
- Use professional expertise to develop learning and working relationships with MPA students in order to promote professional development outside of the classroom.
- Promote the program to outside constituents in order to raise awareness of the University of North Dakota MPA Program, as well as raise awareness of the MPA degree in general.
- Recruit and nominate new members, as needed.
- Select a Board Chairperson.
|Health Administration||Altru Health Systems||Grand Forks, ND|
|City Government||City of Detroit Lakes||Detroit Lakes, MN|
|City Government||City of Grand Forks||Grand Forks, ND|
|City Government||City of East Grand Forks||East Grand Forks, MN|
|City Government||City of Milford||Milford, MN|
|City Government||City of Woodstock||Woodstock, GA|
|County Government||North Dakota Unified Court System||Grand Forks County, ND|
|Government Affairs||Community Affairs and Grassroots, Southwest Airlines||Dallas, TX|
|Non-Profit||Mahube-Otwa Community Action Partnership||Western Minnesota|
|Non-Profit||The Center for Victims of Torture||St. Paul, MN|
|NGO||Net Impact||Oakland, CA|
|State Government||North Dakota State Legislature||Bismarck, ND|
|County Government||Montgomery County States Attorney’s Office||Rockville, MD|
|Health Administration||Sanford Health
Altru Health System
Grand Forks, ND
|Non-Profit||Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States||Washington, DC|
Job Placements After Graduation
Students preparing for a career in public administration, health care administration or the non-profit sector and students preparing for a career change have access to the Pancratz Career Development Center, located in College of Business and Public Administration.
The table below reports employment data 6 months after graduation. The table combines employment status for both pre-service and in-service students.
|Total Number of Graduates||8||11||16||9||8||9|
|National Government (US and Including Tribal)||1||1||1||1|
|State Government (US)||2||2||1||2||3|
|Sub State Government (US)||1||3||3||2||1|
|Private sector - research/consulting||1||4|
|Private sector - not research/ consulting||1||1||1||1||4|
|Obtaining further education||2||4|
Past Graduation Rates
The MPA program admitted 17 students in the 2013-14 Academic Year. To date, 65 percent of the 2013-14 cohort have completed the program.
The table below breaks down number of semesters between admission and graduation. One year includes three semesters (Fall, Spring and Summer). Time toward graduation is influenced by a number of factors, including part time or full time status and number of courses taken per semester. The AY2013-14 cohort includes all students admitted in approved, qualified and provisional status.
|Cumulative Number of Students||Cumulative Percent of Cohort|
|Cohort: Total students enrolled in AY 2013-14||17||100%|
|Graduated within 2 years||4||24%|
|Graduated within 3 years||6||35%|
|Graduated within 4 years||8||47%|
|Total Cohort Students Graduated to date||11||65%|