Our students come to USC Price with so many inherent skills and talents. During their time here, they really develop into a community of leaders.
Dr. Juliet Musso
Houston Flournoy Professor of State Government
To earn the Master of Public Administration degree, students must complete 14 units of required courses, three management competencies courses and three electives. In addition, students who enter the program with less than two years full-time work experience must complete an internship.
Graduate students in Public Administration are required to take the following courses:
- Public Administration and Society (PPD 540)
- Economics for Policy, Planning, and Development (PPD 501ab)
- Intersectoral Leadership (PPD 500)
- Capstone in Public Administration (PPD 546)
Students select one four-unit course from each of the following three areas:
- Human Behavior in Public Organizations (PPD 545)
- Public Financial Management and Budgeting (PPD 541)
- Financial Management of Nonprofit Organizations (PPDE 645)
- Program and Policy Evaluation (PPD 542)
- Modeling and Operations Research (PPD 557)
- Administrative Research and Analysis (PPD 666)
MPA students take 14 units of electives. They may select electives from one of the identified area clusters or may take individual classes from among several areas.
- Civil Infrastructure
- Community and Economic Development
- Environmental Management and Land-Use Policy
- Financial Management
- Health Administration
- Intergovernmental Management
- International Policy and Management
- Local Government
- Nonprofit Management
- Political Management
- Public Policy
- Urban Planning
Professional Experience Requirement
Most MPA students are classified as pre-service or in-service students at the time of admission. Pre-service students are those who enter the program with less than two years full-time work experience. In-service students are those with at least two years full-time work experience. Students pursuing one of the dual degree programs are not classified as pre-service or in-service. Appeals for reclassification of this designation must be submitted during the first semester of enrollment.
Pre-Service Internship Requirement
Pre-service students are required to complete an internship and a one-unit Internship Seminar course (PPD 543). MPA students enroll in Internship Seminar during their first semester. Students complete internships in conjunction with the internship class.
Pre-Service Students: 41 units
In-Service Students: 40 units