UTSA’s Master of Public Administration (MPA) program prepares students for public service careers and leadership roles in government, public and nonprofit realms. The MPA Faculty works to nurture a student’s commitment to ethical public service in their respective communities. All classes are offered through in-class instruction and held in the city's political, economic and cultural center, on the conveniently-located UTSA Downtown Campus.
Our Mission: The MPA program at The University of Texas at San Antonio educates responsible leaders and ethical public servants through a curriculum incorporating original research and practice. The program’s diverse graduates, representing a wide range of professional and community backgrounds, serve the public locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally. Bridging research and practice, MPA graduates demonstrate the decision making, management, communication and analytical skills necessary to sustain a responsive and effective public sector.
MPA Student Learning Outcomes:
• Students will be able to analyze policy, formulate alternatives, and make evidence-based recommendations.
• Students will be able to apply managerial knowledge to public and nonprofit organizations.
• Students will be able to recognize the ethical dimensions of decision making in public and nonprofit settings.
• Students will understand and apply the principles of effective and responsible leadership and will communicate effectively in public and nonprofit settings.
Program Admission Requirements: Applicants must satisfy University-wide graduate admission requirements, submit a letter of intent, and complete undergraduate courses in research methods or statistics and U.S. government (politics). The 500 word letter of intent should state the applicant’s reasons for pursuing the M.P.A., how their educational and/or career experience has prepared them for the M.P.A. program, and how the degree will help the applicant achieve her or his goals. Two letters of recommendation are required. Applicants may be admitted as unconditional, conditional, or special graduate students. Admission as a special graduate student does not guarantee subsequent admission as a degree-seeking student; such students must reapply for degree-seeking status.
Degree Requirements: The minimum number of semester credit hours required for the degree, exclusive of coursework or other study required to remove deficiencies, is 39. In addition to these basic degree requirements, students without previous public service employment must complete an additional 6 semester credit hours of PAD 6963,6 Internship. For a complete listing of courses that satisfy degree requirements see the graduate catalog.
Degree candidates must complete the following requirements:
A. 24 semester credit hours of core courses:
PAD 5003 Introduction to Public Service Leadership and Management
PAD 5023 Research Design and Methods
PAD 5033 Theories of Public Organizations
PAD 5233 Applied Research I
PAD 5323 Public Policy Process
PAD 5363 Public Budgeting and Finance
PAD 5393 Economics for Public Affairs
Normally, students enroll in PAD 5003 during their initial semester.
B. 9 semester credit hours of prescribed electives, choose three (3) courses from the following list:
PAD 5243 Management Information Systems
PAD 5303 Ethics in Government Administration
PAD 5313 Public Policy Analysis
PAD 5333 Program Evaluation
PAD 5343 Human Resource Management in the Public Sector
PAD 5443 Diversity Policies and Management
PAD 5913 Nonprofit Organizations
PAD 5923 Nonprofit Leadership and Management
PAD 5943 Strategic Planning & Management for Public and Nonprofit Organizations
PAD 6243 Administrative Law
C. 6 semester credit hours of Public Administration electives, chosen in consultation with the student's advisor.
D. 1 semester credit hour of PAD 6001 Leadership and Communication Skills Development Seminar.
E. Comprehensive examination. Degree candidates are required to pass an oral comprehensive examination. The examination is administered in the form of a presentation to a faculty committee of the exit paper written by the student in the required PAD 6923 Applied Research course.
Applying to the MPA Program
Fall Term - July 1
Spring Term - November 1
Summer Terms - April 1 and June 1
Fall Term - April 1
Spring Term - September 1
Summer Term - March 1
1. Create account for completing the online application at https://apply.embark.com/grad/utsa/36/.
2. Review requirements and eligibility for applying to the MPA program.
3. Submit completed online application, with 500 word Letter of Intent.
4. Request all transcripts from previous colleges and universities and two letters of recommendation to The Graduate School.