The management degree for career advancement in the public and non-profit sectors:

  • Government
  • Healthcare Management
  • Nonprofit Leadership
  • Public Policy
  • Public Services
  • Education

The MPA is offered in multiple locations to many different kinds of students:

At the School of Public and Global Affairs, we think public service is a calling, public administration is a necessity, and public-minded citizens are essential to a healthy society. As a member of the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA), we seek to provide well-educated leaders for public and nonprofit agencies and to improve the knowledge and credentials of administrators already employed in these organizations.

The curriculum of 39 to 42 credits is designed to provide graduates with conceptual, analytic, and managerial skills for dealing with a variety of public service administration situations. (Students in the Executive program can be awarded advanced standing with evidence of professional development education.)

The program is enriched with a project-based curriculum. The project-based MPA emphasizes group work, problem-solving, and building a portfolio of accomplishment. It integrates accomplished practitioners with accomplished academics to give you the best of both worlds. Many of these courses take place on weekends where you and your cohort are asked to work together to offer policy recommendations, map solutions, and collaborate on research.

  • Working students can find like-minded professionals in our weekend, project-based classes.
  • Our traditional weeknight program is offered at both FDU’s Florham and Metropolitan Campuses.
  • We offer the MPA to defined cohorts at off-campus locations in the USA including:
    • Jersey City, NJ
    • Neptune, NJ
    • NYNJ Port Authority at Newark Airport
    • NYNJ Port Authority at JFK Airport
    • Cumberland County Community College
    • Valley Health System, Paramus, NJ
    • Newark, NJ
  • We also offer the MPA to cohorts at:
    • Wroxton College in Oxfordshire, UK

Program Outcomes

We expect certain professional competencies of our MPA graduates:

  • Communication — An SPGA graduate will demonstrate the ability to prepare and deliver effective oral presentations and or write documents that present and evaluate information and opinion in a logical and analytical manner, incorporating research and documentation, and using style, grammar, mechanics, and/or format appropriate to an educated audience.
  • Critical Thinking — A SPGA graduate will demonstrate competency in critical thinking that encompasses dimensions of informal logic and ethical analysis. Students are expected to be open-minded and rational, as they apply information based on evidence.
  • Information Literacy — A SPGA graduate will demonstrate the ability to carry out thorough and effective information search strategies using traditional print, digital, and internet sources, evaluate information accessed, and use this information along with existing knowledge to create something new. This includes the ability to recognize what information is needed to resolve an issue; the ability to identify and locate that information; and effectively use the information to resolve the issue.
  • Strategic Orientation — A SPGA graduate will demonstrate the ability to develop, implement, coordinate, and/or manage a plan through a collaborative process. This will require them to understand the big picture and develop goals and objectives as well as action steps to reach that vision.

Admission requirements

The credentials required for admission to the Master of Public Administration degree program as a matriculated student include the following:

  • A graduate application for admission and non-refundable application fee.
  • A bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with a minimum cumulative grade point ratio (CGPR) of 2.70. Applicants with a CGPR of less than 2.70 may be admitted as matriculated students on probation.
  • Official transcripts from all colleges and universities previously attended. Applicants who are unable to provide official documents at the time of enrollment may register as non-matriculated students with a graduate faculty adviser.

Degree Plan

The MPA degree is granted for 39 to 42 credits, of which at least 30 credits must be taken at Fairleigh Dickinson University. The 39 credit total must contain:

Required foundation courses in management (18 credits)

Electives courses (18 credits)

  • MPA elective courses are designed to offer students the opportunity to pursue in-depth study in a variety of management areas.

MPA Project Report or MPA Thesis (3 credits)

  • An accepted MPA project or MPA thesis.

Internship or independent study (3 credits)

  • In addition to the 39 credit degree requirement, students are required to participate in a 3-credit internship (or in the case of working professionals, an independent study) that enhances the MPA curriculum and prepares them for career advancement in the public and non-profit sectors.  NOTE: Waiver of the internship requirement is possible with review and approval of comparable public and non-profit experience.

A cumulative grade point ratio of 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) is required for graduation. Students who receive more than two grades of C or lower will be dismissed from the program.

Students are required to consult with their assigned academic adviser to assess overall academic performance and plan for their program of study.

Specializations

Students may specialize within the MPA by taking 4 of their 6 electives in:

  • Global affairs: Examines administrative structures, policy and management issues in the arena of international relations, stressing comparative analysis, leadership and cultural perspectives.
  • Global transportation management: Focuses on the background, administrative structure and issues, environmental components and operational aspects in the context of international transportation and commerce.
  • Healthcare management: In addition to MPA core management curriculum, students investigate a range of healthcare management topics — from managing the continuum of care and global health issues to comparative health systems and health finance and control systems.
  • Public management: Offers a broad range of management studies from Employee Relations and Delivery of Public Services to Organizational Performance Assessment.
  • Public policy:  Emphasizes project-based learning to assess problems and devise solutions for leaders called on to analyze, evaluate and devise policy for others to implement.

MPA PharmD dual degree option

Students enrolled in the University’s Doctor of Pharmacy program can enhance their career trajectory by mastering non-profit and public sector administration. PharmD students can complete the MPA with a specialization in healthcare management and graduate on time with both degrees.

MPA-MPH dual degree option

Dual Master Degree in Public Administration and Public Health

⭐ New in Fall 2022, students may apply to join the cohort of the online Dual MPA-MPH degree.

Read more and Apply here

MPA also offered at

Course Descriptions

  • PADM6600 The course provides an overview of the macro and micro forces that are influencing public and non-profit management. These factors include fiscal and resource scarcity, rapid technologi- cal change and obsolencence, organizational downsizing/restruct- uring, information management technology, and shifting employee demographics. The course will focus on the methods and strategies for efficiently and effectively managing public organizations in the face of the endemic internal and external problems and challenges.

  • PADM6601 An analysis of the role of organizational theory, discussion of the major orientations in explaining organizational and administrative activities and their impact upon those who work within or are affected by organizational action. Fall, Spring

  • PADM6602 This course presents an overview of the major principles and concepts associated with public expenditure budgeting and the resource allocation decision making process. The first part of the course focuses on the centrality of the budget process and examines the logic and process of budgeting, fund accounting and financial statement analysis. The second part of the course focuses on revenue structures and examines basic principles of taxation and the nature and diversity of public sector revenues.

  • PADM6603 The goal of this course is to introduce managers to the public policy-making process. This introduction exposes students to the economic and moral justification for public policies and teaches the policy analytic tools that support informed policy. The course addresses policy-making at all levels of government with an emphasis on skills that can be used by managers on a daily basis.

  • PADM6604 This course presents students with an overview of the tools and techniques of human resources management and the major personnel policy issues. The course emphasizes the application of specific knowledge, skills and abilities to solve management problems. Topics covered include recruitment, examination, job classifica- tion, salary and wage administration, performance management, employee development, supervision, equal employment opportunity and affirmative action.

  • PADM6606 The course provides an overview of the decision making tools employed in program management and evaluation. The course begins with an overview of the principles of research design focusing on the basic methods of problem diagnosis and measurement (interviews, surveys, focus groups, archival analysis). The second part of the course emphasizes the principles and tools of program evaluation. The course develops the analytical and critical thinking skills of students to solve common management problems.

  • PADM6610 This course provides students with the computer and interpretation skills needed to answer quantitative questions and confront managers and policy makers. Examples of questions covered include statistical inference, forecasting, and other forms of prediction.