Master of Public Administration

Is the Seattle University MPA program the right fit for me?

The Seattle University Master of Public Administration (MPA) program educates public service professionals seeking to advance their careers in local, state, or federal government or the nonprofit sector. Our graduates receive a holistic education that promotes engagement and service in our communities, and prepares them with knowledge and skills in critical thinking, analysis, administration, management, policy, and research.

>> Master of Public Administration Mission Statement

What types of students are in the MPA program?

  • 85% of our 130 students work full-time during their time in the program.
  • For students not employed or seeking to explore another field or sector of interest, the Seattle University MPA offers hands on learning and service opportunities in the heart of an urban community. 2017-2018 internship sites included: City of Seattle, King County, Sound Transit, BloodWorks NW, City of Bellevue, and Enterprise Community Partners.

What makes the Seattle University MPA program unique?

  • We focus on social justice and engagement with diverse communities.
  • Service and research from faculty who are active scholars and practitioners, including six full-time faculty, and part-time faculty that are experienced professionals in their field.
  • We collaborate with a network of experienced students, faculty, alumni, and community leaders.

How much does the degree cost?

  • MPA tuition for the 2019-2020 academic year is $735 per credit and is subject to change annually by the Seattle University Board of Trustees.
  • The MPA is a 57-credit program, so the total cost for the degree based on the 2019-2020 tuition is $41,895. 

How long will it take for me to graduate?

  • Our program operates on the quarter system; classes are offered Summer, Fall, Winter, and Spring and take place weekday evenings or on Saturdays.
  • Most students take two courses per quarter; at that rate, the MPA can be completed in two and a half years.
  • Completion rates for the 68 MPA students who started the program in 2012-2013 admissions cycle:
     # Graduated% Graduated
    Graduated in 2 years 15 22%
    Graduated in 3 years 44 65%
    Graduated in 4 years 52 76%
    Graduated in 5 years 56 82%

What types of careers do graduates of the MPA program go onto?

  • Nearly 3/4 of our graduates continue to live and work in the Puget Sound region.
  • Specific examples include: Executive Director, Compass Housing Alliance, Community Engagement Director, Swedish Medical Center,  Budget Analyst, WA State Department of Social and Health Services, Executive Director, SkillUp Washington, Research Analyst, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
  • Several of our MPA  graduates join the U.S. Presidential Management Fellows program, a prestigious two-year training and development program at a United States government agency, placements include: Department of Defense, U.S. Department of Labor, and National Institutes of Health.
  • MPA Employment Rates for 2016-2017 graduates.

Are scholarships available?

All newly admitted MPA students are eligible to apply for the MPA Departmental Scholarship and/or AmeriCorps Alumni Scholarship. Financial need is strongly considered when selecting recipients and the amount of their award. Learn more about scholarships.