The MPA degree prepares students for public-service careers with local, state, and federal government agencies and non-profit organizations. Students may earn their MPA by taking courses on campus and at the Dixon University Center in Harrisburg.
Students applying for the MPA program should have a 2.75 GPA with relevant coursework or professional experience. Applicants who do not meet minimum requirements may be required to take an introductory course. Applications require a resume.
The MPA degree requires students to complete 36 credit hours. Each student's program includes six core courses, four elective courses, and a 6 credit-hour internship. Students who have full-time managerial employment in a relevant profession may apply for an internship waiver when applying to the MPA program. Students obtaining a waiver for the 6 credit-hour internship are required to choose a 3 credit-hour experiential skills course for a total of 33 credit hours.
MPA students should register for PLS 501 Organizational Theory and Behavior during their first semester. PLS 605 Capstone Seminar: Applied Public Management should be taken during students' final semester.
Shippensburg University's MPA program is a member of the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA). 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 public administration academic honor society received the NASPAA National Chapter of Excellence Award in 2014.