Public Administration engages graduate students in the search for evidence-based practices that advance the public good. It combines the fields of organizational behavior, policy analysis, human resources, public budgeting, information technology, strategic planning, and program implementation and evaluation.
The MPA program emphasizes effective management and leadership practices that build high-performing teams, involve communities in planning, and navigate public and nonprofit agencies for the public good. The coursework applies interpersonal skills, administrative concepts, and multiple frames to actual work situations. Emphasizing action and research, the curriculum draws on the Jesuit tradition of reflection, experience, and core-value driven leadership for lifelong learning and professional growth.
Change the World from Here
Through small group activities and seminar discussions, you will focus on experiential learning, case analysis, and diagnostic and critical-thinking skills, shifting from cognition to action and effective behaviors. Increase your capacity for problem solving, effective inquiry, and how to work through ambiguity and uncertainty. The MPA program highlights ethical decision-making and community and organizational contributions, enabling you to actively apply USF’s mission to change the world from here.
The Student Perspective:
“For me, the biggest revelation was pulling together the class materials and discussions to gain an understanding of how public administration affects society’s thoughts, emotions, and ability to grasp the message. Learning how to create policy while involving the members that the laws affect. This semester, my motivation for attending school has changed. I feel more drawn to new experiences, and I like the challenge of stepping out of my comfort zone to solve the problem.”
“I was accustomed to researching and writing about a litany of policy issues, but I viewed the accompanying obstacles mainly from a political lens. My background with policy was focused on campaigning and gaining support from interest groups, rather than on implementation. I underestimated the level of complexity and moving parts associated with doing so. Now I know that many of the problems threatening successful governance are new and will not conform to traditional definitions, limitations or solutions. I learned that group discussion does more than offer different perspectives. It can mete out biases and highlight useful experience by recognizing the limitations of individuals. I learned to discard solutions whenever they came from a place of hopefulness and chance rather than as a component of planned outcome. Everything I’ve learned reinforced to me that administrators can formulate proper strategies for even the most seemingly intractable problems.”