UIC to launch online Master of Public Administration degree

The UIC Department of Public Policy, Management, and Analytics is launching a fully online option for its Master of Public Administration degree, with classes starting in January 2024. 

An online informational session about the new program is scheduled for Sept. 6. 

The MPA degree from UIC prepares students for public service careers in government at the federal, state and local levels, as well as nonprofit organizations, research and policy institutes, and other agencies devoted to meaningful societal change.

An MPA degree offers the analytical and leadership skills necessary to pursue a variety of career opportunities by providing students with a comprehensive understanding of public management, policy analysis, budgeting, financial management and organizational leadership. These skills offer UIC MPA graduates a competitive advantage in the job market for employment positions in need of effective leaders and problem solvers. 

The online MPA degree consists of 13 courses plus two one-credit professional development seminars. Students have the option of completing the fully asynchronous online degree at a pace that fits their needs. All courses are offered in convenient, accelerated eight-week terms throughout the year, giving students maximum flexibility. Full-time students typically take two eight-week courses at a time, and part-time students complete one eight-week course at a time. Full-time students can complete the entire degree in as little as seven consecutive eight-week terms, or 16 months.

“Providing an online option to students who want more opportunities, to move quicker, or to attend class anytime, anywhere was a priority for us, and our faculty recognize the importance of providing this option to expand access to our highly ranked MPA program to more people,” said Jered Carr, professor and department head of public policy, management and analytics.

The UIC MPA degree is one of only 192 programs worldwide that are fully accredited by the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration. The content of courses offered through the fully online program is developed by faculty members who teach the same courses in the traditional on-site program, Carr explained. 

“This ensures that students in the online MPA will receive the same high-quality content as our MPA students taking on-site courses,” he said.

The UIC MPA program was founded in 1975 and has prepared thousands of alumni for rewarding public service careers. UIC MPA graduates can be found in metropolitan and municipal management positions, regional planning organizations, nonprofits, state and federal agencies, government consultancies, public safety and elected leadership positions. 

MPA faculty members are field-leading experts, regularly winning national awards for excellence in research and service to prominent organizations. Their academic training and research interests cover a broad range of topics, including public and nonprofit management, public policy, statistics and research methods, survey research, economics, organizational theory and decision making, human resources, budgeting and finance and information technology.

Deborah A. Carroll, incoming department head of public policy, management and analytics said, “I was drawn to UIC because of the department’s stature in public management, finance and governance and because of the high caliber of its faculty. It seems natural to offer our courses and degree programs in a variety of delivery options from onsite to online to accelerated.”

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