The M.P.A. curriculum consists of 42 credit hours of M.P.A. courses and is designed to prepare graduates to lead with purpose in management roles in the non-profit sector. The program includes:
- Core courses: 15 credits
- Non-Profit Concentration courses: 21 credits
- Non-Profit Elective course: 3 credits
- Capstone course: 3 credits
Core Courses (15 credits)
PSMA 6001 The Environment of Public Service Management (3)
PSMA 6002 Research Methods and Statistical Analysis (3)
PSMA 6004 The Economic Environment of Public Service Management (3)
PSMA 6011 Cross-Sector Collaboration and Cooperation (3)
PSMA 7715 Ethics in Public Service (3)
Non-Profit Concentration (21 credits)
PSMA 7311 Foundations of Non-profits (3)
PSMA 7312 Non-profit Leadership and Management (3)
PSMA 7314 Financial Management for Non-profit Organizations (3)
PSMA 73XX Non-profits and Public Policy (3)
PSMA 73XX Non-profit HR Management and Volunteer Management (3)
PSMA 731X Non-profit Fundraising, Development, and Grant Writing (3)
PSMA 8312 Non-profit Advocacy/ Lobbying (3)
Non-Profit Elective (3 credits) (choose one)
PSMA 8313 Nonprofit Law (3)
PSMA 83XX Social Entrepreneurship (3)
Capstone Course (3 credits) (choose one)
PSMA 7991 Internship* (3)
PSMA 7992 Capstone* (3)
PSMA 7993 Research Seminar* (3)
M.P.A. Core Course Descriptions
PSMA 6001 The Environment of Public Service Management (3 credit hours)
An overview of the political, social, legal and ethical realities affecting managers in public and nonprofit organizations such as government agencies, churches, schools, museums and community service organizations. Topics include: theoretical as well as operational perspectives, particularly as they distinguish public administration from business administration; the power of the public service professional and values of public service systems; and political processes, legal factors and other mechanisms of accountability.
PSMA 6002 Research Methods and Statistical Analysis (3 credit hours)
Introduces both quantitative and qualitative research methodologies. Topics include descriptive and inferential statistics, issues in sampling and hypothesis testing, analysis of variance, regression and time series analysis, as well as survey design. Computer software is used for statistical analysis.
PSMA 6004 The Economic Environment of Public Service Management (3 credit hours)
This course explores the economic system as the setting within which nonprofit, healthcare, arts and public service organizations function. It introduces microeconomic principles, with some coverage of fiscal, monetary and regulatory policies, as well as public goods and problems of market failure. Economic concepts and tools as they relate to the management of public service organizations are also covered.
PSMA 6011 Cross-Sector Collaboration and Cooperation (3 credit hours)
Addressing public issues increasingly requires leaders in all three sectors – public, private and nonprofit –to work collaboratively across sector boundaries. This course will explore current practices in cross-sector collaborations and partnerships, drawing on theoretical frameworks developed for collaborative governance. As the boundaries between sectors blur, approaches of one sector are often adopted and employed by another. We will explore the management challenges arising from sector blurring, particularly those arising from the increased adoption of marketized and managerial forms emerging from the neoliberal frame.
PSMA 7715 Ethics in Public Service (3 credit hours)
Probes the ethical realities faced by professionals in government, healthcare, religious, educational and other nonprofit organizations. Designed to develop and broaden awareness and appreciation of the power wielded by the public service professional, of the values public service professionals are expected to maintain, and of the ethical dimensions of public service management. The course is geared to developing operational skills for ethical analysis and action.
Non-Profit Concentration Course Descriptions
PSMA 7311 Foundations of the Nonprofit Sector (3 credit hours)
This course promotes a thorough understanding of the nature of nonprofit organizations and the nonprofit sector as a whole. It explores size, scope and dimensions of the sector as well as its history, the various perspectives of philanthropy and the changing role of the nonprofit sector in contemporary society.
PSMA 7312 Leadership and Management in Non-profit Organizations (3 credit hours)
Explore various areas of responsibility in leading and managing nonprofit organizations with particular emphasis on the relationship and interaction between the chief executive and the board of directors. This course is intended as a follow-up to and extension of PSMA 7311.
PSMA 7313 Non-Profit Fundraising and Development (3 credit hours)
Examines principles, techniques and issues surrounding resource development in nonprofit organizations. Focuses on raising funds from private sources, including individuals, corporations and foundations. Annual funds, capital campaigns and endowment support are among topics covered. The board’s role in resource development, ethical issues and government regulations is also discussed.
PSMA 73XX Non-Profits and Public Policy (3 credit hours)
Governments impact nonprofits in many ways, such as establishing, regulating, monitoring, and funding them. First, this course will focus on the various ways in which governments impact nonprofits. Then, we will examine each of the major subsectors, i.e. healthcare, education, social services, arts and culture, social welfare, international assistance, etc. What are the similarities and differences in how public policies have affected each of them?
PSMA 73XX Non-Profit HR Management and Volunteer Management (3 credit hours)
This course examines the roles of public and nonprofit personnel executives, personnel functions, and the application of problem-solving techniques. An exploration of the development and evolution of the civil service system and relevant personnel laws and regulations is also covered. Student will compare and contrast strategies for managing volunteers with strategies for managing paid staff. The class will also create an opportunity for students to apply conceptual materials to practical examples and grapple with real issues facing public and nonprofit managers.
PSMA 731X Non-Profit Fundraising, Development, and Grant Writing (3 credit hours)
This course provides students with a comprehensive overview of grants and contracts from the perspective of furthering the mission of a nonprofit or government agency. Trends in grantmaking, grantwriting, funding source identification and relationship development with funders are among the topics covered.
PSMA 8312 Nonprofit Advocacy and Lobbying (3 credit hours)
In addition to their role in service delivery to the community, nonprofits serve an important function as advocacy organizations, providing information to policy makers on their particular areas of expertise, lobbying government for change, and providing information on particular policy positions. This course provides students with an overview to the nonprofit functions of advocacy and lobbying, examining ways that nonprofits may and may not become involved in the public policy process. The role of advocacy in advancing issues of democracy and social justice are explored, as well as strategies to build social capital within communities. International case studies of innovative and successful advocacy campaigns will be introduced as examples of advocacy strategies that worked and why. The interdisciplinary curriculum draws on theories from sociology, political science, organization theory and social work.
Non-Profit Elective Course Descriptions
PSMA 8313 Nonprofit Law (3 credit hours)
This course helps current and future managers of nonprofit organizations understand the legal issues facing them as leaders in the nonprofit sector. Thorough understanding of the legal issues requires not only a firm grasp of the letter and application of the law but also a recognition of the context in which the law arise and in which it currently is implemented. This course promotes a deep understanding of nonprofit organizations, their activities, and the environments in which they exist, al as illustrated by the ever more complex legal issues that provide the framework within which all nonprofits must operate.
PSMA 83XX Social Entrepreneurship (3 credit hours)
This course prepares students to be innovators and change leaders by exploring the social entrepreneurship perspective to examine leadership and management practices within nonprofit and public service organizations. Through hands-on experiential training formulating interventions for social change, students develop a new set of tools so that they can bring innovative and sustainable solutions of social problems.
Capstone Course Descriptions
PSMA 7991 Internship (3 credit hours)
Designed for pre-service students or for those with fewer than two years of management experience, this course affords students an opportunity to learn management skills through onsite experience. The students must complete a minimum of 300 hours of managerial or administrative work under the tutelage of a public service, nonprofit, arts or healthcare administrator and complete all assignments given by the professor of the seminar associated with the internship.
PSMA 7992 Practicum (3 credit hours)
Consists of a 3-credit, group-consulting project related to an area of public service, nonprofit, arts or healthcare administration or management. The practicum typically requires the writing of a management report and the delivery of an oral presentation for the subject organization. All work is completed under faculty supervision.
PSMA 7993 Research Seminar (3 credit hours)
Designed for students currently working full time on a supervisory or management level in the healthcare, nonprofit, or public sector, as well as in the arts, this course gives each individual the opportunity to design and conduct a research project that focuses on a management or policy problem at his/her place of employment or in the public arena. The student presents methodology, results and recommendations both as a written capstone project and as an oral presentation. Students who have completed all degree requirements except the research seminar (PSMA 7993) must register for Thesis Continuation (THCN 7999) for the first semester subsequent to the research seminar (PSMA 7993) registration, and THCN 8000 from the second subsequent semester until the completion and presentation of the culminating research project.