There are three universities in Kansas that offers a Master of Public Administration program and are accredited by the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA).
Both of the major institutions in the state, Kansas State University in Manhattan and the University of Kansas in Lawrence, offer an on-campus program.
Online MPA Programs in Kansas
There is only one current NASPAA-accredited university that offers a Master of Public Administration completely online: Wichita State University. Kansas State University also offers a standalone graduate certificate in the same field that can be completed fully online.
Wichita State University Online MPA
The online MPA program prepares students for leadership opportunities in the public and nonprofit sector, and there are no requirements to meet on campus at Wichita. 39 total credits are needed to complete the curriculum, and the 15 credits required for electives can fit various certifications: Nonprofit Management, City and County Management, Economic Development, and Public Finance. There is a 100 percent success rate in students finding opportunities within a year after graduation, with roles as a research analyst, city manager, and financial manager.
Very few students are admitted into the program each year, so it is imperative to meet the requirements of obtaining an undergraduate degree with a 3.0 minimum GPA over the last 60 hours of coursework. Additional submissions include a letter of application, resume, and two reference letters. There is no need to submit GRE scores.
Online learning at WSU is split up into three semesters -- fall and spring is 16 weeks long and the summer is 8 weeks. Admission in the online MPA program is in the fall and spring, with deadlines on April 1st and November 1st, respectively. Business-related courses will typically have proctored exams in a locally approved location or through ProctorU technology with a webcam.
Consider Featured Online MPA Programs
Kansas State University Online Grad Certificate
The College of Arts and Sciences offers a Public Administration Graduate Certificate that is completed fully online and accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
Of the 15 total credits needed to gain the certification, four of the five core courses needed to be taken: Research Methods in Political Science or Policy Analysis and Evaluation, Public Personnel Administration, Public Organization Theory, and Public Budgeting. An additional elective will complete the program.
University of Kansas Campus Based MPA in Lawrence
The School of Public Affairs and Administration provides a Master of Public Administration with a focus on educating students in important subjects such as human resource management and cash flow planning. 43 credit hours are needed to complete the program, separated among 10 required courses and 4 electives to customize the degree to a student’s needs. There are standalone certifications in specific areas of specialization: City and County Management and Performance Management.
Example courses in the core curriculum include Introduction Quantitative Methods, Law and Public Management, and Policy Analysis and Program Evaluation. It is recommended that students have a good understanding of Microsoft Excel as a number of classes will utilize the program. There are Excel courses that are free through the Information Technology department. Applications will be considered if prospective students hold a Bachelor’s degree with a recommended 3.0 GPA or above and submit an online application with fee, official transcripts, three letters of recommendation, resume, personal statement, writing sample, and GRE scores for those that have obtained a Bachelor’s in the last three years.
Kansas State University Campus Based MPA in Manhattan
The Department of Political Science features a Master of Public Administration that can be completed on-campus. It takes 40 semester hours to complete the degree, including 24 credits toward the core curriculum, 15 credits worth of electives, and a credit toward an internship for those that do not have any professional experience. The are four areas of emphasis to choose from: Public Budgeting and Finance, Planning, Security Studies, and State and Local Government. Students may choose a customized emphasis if approved by the program director. There are an additional three courses of electives needed, such as administrative law or ethics, or financial management in the nonprofit sector.
KSU also offers the ability for undergraduates to enroll in a concurrent Bachelor and Master degrees in Public Administration, and all coursework can be completed within five and a half years. 40 graduate-level credits are still needed to complete the program. Throughout the last five graduation years, most students have found work in state or regional government, with other results in more local government work, domestic nonprofit, or opting to pursue further education.