Pursuing a Master of Public Administration

Do you have a passion for public service?  If so, this is the perfect graduate program for you.

Our Mission is to prepare students to be successful public and nonprofit administrators and managers in today's metropolitan and global environment.  Our graduates work in a wide variety of leadership positions across all levels of government as well as the non-profit and private sectors. Our alum include city, county and township administrators, planners, department and program managers, nonprofit executives, entrepreneurs, community developers, and fundraising professionals.

The MPA program meets the needs of students seeking to begin professional public service careers (pre-service) and experienced practitioners seeking career advancement (in-service). Students may complete the MPA degree through part-time or full-time enrollment.

Wright State's Master of Public Administration Program

Our program has been nationally accredited by the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA) since 2002.

The curriculum bridges theory and practice to develop professionalism, integrity and student capacity to fully engage in public problem-solving and successfully lead civic change. We offer evening classes and alternative scheduling to better serve busy and public service students. Our students may select from a range of opportunities, including internships, certificates and dual degree programs that best fit their career goals.


Applicants must have earned a Bachelor degree prior to entering the program. You submit transcripts from all higher education institutions that you have attended and three letters of recommendation from individuals who are not your friends or family and who know your academic capacity for graduate level studies. All letters should be from a professional, on letterhead, and signed. We also need a personal 400-word essay that explains how the MPA program advances your career objectives.  MPA applicants are not required to take a standardized admissions test such as the GRE or GMAT. However, applicants who have taken such standardized tests may choose to submit their scores as additional evidence of their academic preparation for graduate school.

There are three levels of admission for the MPA program.  Qualifications for each are listed below.

  • Regular Admission:  3.0 grade point average or 2.7 grade point average and at least a 3.2 for the last 50% of your credit hours.
  • Conditional Admission: 2.7 grade point average or 2.5 grade point average and at least a 3.0 for the last 50% of your credit hours.
  • Non-degree Status: Promising MPA applicants who do not meet the requirements for Regular or Conditional admission to the MPA program may apply for Non-degree status through the WSU Graduate School. However, Non-degree status does not guarantee future admission to the MPA program. MPA applicants in Non-degree status must be accepted by the WSU Graduate School and complete nine credit hours (three semester courses) of approved MPA coursework with a minimum grade of at least 3.0 (B) in each course. When students in Non-degree status meet these requirements, they must then apply or petition for admission to the MPA program.

All students apply online through the Graduate School. The Graduate School accepts applications on a year-round basis; students admitted to the MPA program begin each fall term.  MPA faculty will review your application after the Graduate School determines your application is complete. The MPA Admissions Committee recommends students for admission to the Graduate School.  Upon acceptance, the Graduate School and the Department of Urban Affairs and Geography will send you a formal letter of welcome and identify a faculty member who will guide you in preparing a Program of Studies.

Students entering in the fall are encouraged to apply well before April 15th.  Please note that students seeking a GRA position must apply by January 17th for first consideration.

Go to the Program section for information on courses and course load.

International students will find useful information on the WSU University Center for International Education website.

Additional information and policies may be found on the WSU Graduate School website.