Master of Public Administration

Currently Accepting Applications!

Apply by 12/30/22 | Start Class 01/09/23

Apply Now!

Program Overview

Offered by the College of Liberal Arts at USI, the 100% online Master of Public Administration (MPA) provides high quality training to help students improve management-related job skills and performance, obtain leadership positions within their current organizations, or begin their career in a public or nonprofit organization.

These skills are developed through hands on projects with community members that foster leadership while doing good. Our graduates are prepared to meet the economic, social, and political challenges that face society.

The Nonprofit Excellence Symposium opens registration every September.
Learn more here.

Click here to view and download our promotional flyer.

Tuition & Fees   Get Started

Career Outlook

Earning your Master of Public Administration from USI will open doors to opportunities such as:

More Online MPA Options:

Traditional MPA Options:

MPA 4+1 Accelerated Program Dual Degree - MPA and MSW

Mission and Objectives


The Master of Public Administration Program at the University of Southern Indiana strives to meet the needs of current and future civic leaders and managers by providing students with the practical knowledge and professional and academic skills, rooted in a strong understanding of the theories of public administration, to become ethical, creative, and inspirational leaders in the public and non-profit sectors. Our graduates are prepared to meet the economic, social, and political challenges that face leading public sector institutions and non-profit organizations.

Program Objectives:

  • Obtain knowledge of the theoretical and institutional foundations and the internal operations of the public and nonprofit sectors and how these sectors are shaped by their economic, social, and political environments.
  • Master an understanding of how key concepts and theories in the field of public administration can be used to formulate applied solutions to problems associated with public and nonprofit administration.
  • Acquire practical skills necessary for the management of public and non-profit organizations, such as grant writing, budgeting, public speaking, human resources management, organizational behavior, electronic communication, and report writing.
  • Learn how to gather and analyze qualitative and quantitative data (through data bases, web sites, printed material, and other information-based resources) and develop research skills that can be used to advance the knowledge and practice of public administration. 
  • Understand the ethical consequences of decisions made by managers and administrators in the public and nonprofit sectors.
Admission Requirements

Applicants seeking to be admitted to the Master of Public Administration program generally hold a bachelor’s degree (any major is acceptable) with at least a 3.0 grade point average on a 4.0 scale. Students with less than a 3.0 GPA may be admitted on a conditional basis upon review by the admissions committee. In some instances, students with less than a 3.0 GPA may be asked to provide additional information as part of their application.


Nonprofit Excellence Symposium

The Nonprofit Excellence Symposium brings together professionals from local businesses and nonprofits for a half-day of workshops, presentations, idea sharing, and networking open to USI students and anyone who works in or is interested in the nonprofit sector.

Click below to learn more.

Nonprofit Excellence Symposium

Community-Based Projects

Students in the Master of Public Administration Program gain real life experience by working with community partners to develop projects that serve the community while developing skills that make a difference. 

Click below to see a sampling of student projects that represent the work that our students create.

Community-Based Projects

Credits for Prior Learning

With the Master of Public Administration, you have the opportunity to receive up to 9 credits for prior learning! If you have been in the work force and have gained relevant experience, you can apply that knowledge towards receiving credits in the MPA program. This can allow you to graduate earlier and pay less for your degree! See the links below for more information.

Students interested in applying for PLC should contact the program director, Trent Engbers, at

Download the MPA PLA Policy

Visit USI's Portfolio Review - Graduate Page

Receiving Credits for Prior Learning

Students who wish to receive credit for prior learning should submit a portfolio of experience to the MPA program director. The portfolio should be received after they are accepted to the program but prior to the completion of 9 credits. The nine-credit deadline refers to those graduate classes taken after acceptance to the program. The portfolio will be evaluated by a committee of faculty of the program. Portfolios are reviewed on a rolling basis. The decision of the committee or their designee is binding and there is no appeal.

The total number of combined transfer credits and PLC credits may not exceed 12.

Receiving Transfer Credits

Students who have completed graduate work at accredited universities will be able to transfer in up to 12 credits toward the MPA, based on their grades and the similarity of their previous work to that at USI. These determinations will be made by the program director and the members of the MPA evaluations committee based on best practices in the field.

The total number of combined transfer credits and PLC credits may not exceed 12.

Program Calendar

Course Start Application Deadline Document Deadline Registration Deadline
08/22/22 08/16/22 08/12/22 08/19/22
01/09/23 12/30/22 12/30/22 01/06/23

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Dr. Trent Engbers
Program Director

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