How do I determine which MPA option is right for me?
Our MPA program at the University of Kansas allows you, the student, to choose the option that most interests you and fits within your career goals.
The INTERN option is designed for students who want to pursue the MPA degree on a full-time basis. Intern-option students begin the program in the summer term, and complete their coursework over three terms (summer, fall, spring). During the second year of the program, intern-option students work in a full-time paid professional internship. This option was designed for students who want to pursue a career in local government, either at the city or county level.
The CAREER option is designed for students who may already be working in city, county, state, or federal government, a nonprofit organization or other entity who want to pursue the MPA while still maintaining their current job. These students may begin the program in the fall or spring.
Students in both options take the same core coursework.
Our MPA program is designed to ensure that, upon graduation, all students have a strong command over the five universal competencies specified by the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA). These competencies reflect the behavioral and skill foundations for effective public sector careers. These universal competencies are to:
- Lead and manage in public governance;
- Participate in and contribute to the public policy process;
- Analyze, synthesize, think critically, solve problems and make decisions;
- Articulate and apply a public service perspective; and
- Communicate and interact productively with a diverse and changing workforce and citizenry.