Master of Public Administration (MPA)


USF Master of Public Administration: Who We Are


Since 1977, the USF MPA has been training students for work in the public and nonprofit sectors. Our 45 credit hour program (42 credit hours for students holding public and nonprofit sector management positions) is offered on our Tampa campus. With an enrollment of 60 – 70 masters students, we are able to offer small classes (10 – 25 students) and one-on-one advising.

To accommodate working students, our courses are primarily offered on-campus in the evenings. We offer some online course options, but we do not offer an exclusively online MPA degree at this time.

Mission statement:

The USF Masters of Public Administration program provides quality education to prepare students for professional and managerial roles in public service. Our program's mission is to provide each student with an opportunity to enhance his or her knowledge of, and participation in, public service through continuing education, training, and development. We maximize engagement with our community through the use of applied class projects, internships, and the development of mutually beneficial exchanges with practitioners. With a focus on the concerns of our West Central Florida region, we train students to play professional and management roles at the local, state, and national levels.

As part of this mission, the MPA program inculcates a sense of public spirit and trains students to acquire the skills and values needed to act in an ethical manner, respect diversity, and to nurture a sense of accountability and responsibility as public servants. USF MPA students use applied managerial skills, enhanced analytical decision-making, and improved capacity to understand and solve real-world problems.

Time to completion and employment:

Full time students can complete this program in two years. Part time students will need three to four years, depending on how many credit hours they take each semester. Our students have been very successful in finding employment. Of our 20 graduates from the 2014-2015 academic year, 16 were employed in the field within a year of graduation (two were still seeking work and two could not be contacted).

Costs of attendance:

View our per credit hour tuition and fees.

Click here to learn more about our program's student completion and employment rates.

MPA Statistics

Real World Experience

Students gain practical experience in many ways. Class projects often involve collaboration with local governments or nonprofit agencies. A mentorship program allows students at all stages of their careers to partner with senior administrators in the region. And our internship program, recommended for all students and required for those who do not come in with relevant management experience, is often a stepping stone to employment. Recent internship placements have included the City of Lakeland; Tampa General Hospital; the American Diabetes Society, Pinellas County Emergency Management, and the USF Office of Government Relations.

Take the next step in your public or nonprofit sector career

With an MPA from USF, you can pursue a career in local, state, or federal government agencies, nonprofit organizations and special service districts. The degree also enables you to continue studying public affairs with doctoral programs, including the Doctorate in Public Administration or a Ph.D. in public policy and administration. See the links below for more information, and to schedule a meeting with the program director.

See the MPA Student Handbook for more information. Also see our MPA Summer 2019 Newsletter!

Apply to USF today! Your MPA, Your Way