Cheyney University of Pennsylvania, the nation‘s oldest African-American higher education institution, is offering a 36 credit-hour Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree program with two degree tracks: a pre-professional Master of Public Administration, and an Executive Master of Public Administration. This places Cheyney in a unique position to address the need to increase the number of senior-level Minorities in public administration. Courses will emphasize methods that public administrators should use to address the needs of the nation’s changing population.

Depending on previous administrative work experience, students may be admitted to either the Executive or the Pre-Professional track. Individuals with at least five years of management experience will be eligible for the Executive MPA degree program track. Cheyney University will offer weekend and evening courses to accommodate student needs, with on-line courses planned within two years. Students enrolled in the Cheyney University MPA program with little or no management experience will pursue a pre-professional program consisting of 24 hours of core coursework, with up to 9 hours in electives, and 6 hours of an internship experience that includes an internship paper. These requirements correspond with the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA) curriculum standards. All students, pre-professional and executive, will be required to spend at least one academic year completing the core requirements as outlined by NASPAA.

The Master’s in Public Administration (MPA) program resides in Cheyney University’s School of Arts & Sciences, and is administered by the Department of Social & Behavioral Sciences in cooperation with the Dean of Graduate Studies. Classes are held evenings and Saturdays and are taught at the Cheyney University Urban Center at 8th and Market Streets in Philadelphia.

The MPA program at Cheyney is intended to offer maximum flexibility for a diverse body of students – some of whom may have just completed the Bachelor’s degree, others of whom may be experienced professionals seeking to enhance their skills. Courses may be offered in the traditional 15 week semester format, the accelerated 7½ week semester format, and also during the Summer semesters. Plans are also in place to offer some, or all, of the courses online. With this flexibility, it may be possible to acquire the MPA within 1 year, although for most students it will be more practical to get the degree in 1½ to 2 years. A full course load for graduate studies at Cheyney University is 9 credit hours per semester.

Admission Requirements:

  1. Bachelor‘s degree (or higher), with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. must submit official transcripts to Admissions office
  2. GRE Scores must be submitted to Admissions office
  3. A written essay to be evaluated by a committee of graduate faculty.
  4. 3 letters of recommendation must be submitted to admissions office

Admission applications are reviewed by a committee of graduate faculty, who then make recommendation to the Dean of Graduate Studies. Students meeting all of the criteria above will be granted regular admission status. Students failing to meet one or more of the criteria may be granted conditional admission – which will convert to regular admission once all criteria are met.

Students with a cumulative GPA slightly below 3.0 may be granted conditional admission upon the recommendation of the MPA faculty committee. Such students must register for XPA 500 – a writing intensive course designed to help students improve their written work. Upon the recommendation of the course instructor, students successfully completing XPA 500 will be granted regular admission to the program, provided all other criteria are satisfied.

Academic Performance:

Students in the MPA program are required to maintain a GPA of 3.0 or above to remain in good academic standing. A student whose GPA falls below 3.0 for two consecutive semesters will be reviewed by the MPA faculty committee and may be dismissed from the program.

MPA Program Objectives:

  • Providing current and future administrators with the necessary analytical problem- solving and critical thinking skills that will allow them to create and maintain public and private institutions that can best serve the Philadelphia region, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the nation;
  • Developing competent professionals prepared for the challenges of the 21st Century, including new technological developments;
  • Sensitizing graduates to the needs of diverse international communities and an increasingly international workforce;
  • Enhancing communication among diverse peoples in a global society;
  • Promoting effective teaching practices to enable students to become engaged, lifelong learners in an ever-changing society.
  • Students who graduate from the Cheyney University MPA program will be able to meet the following general learning objectives.
  • Apply good management practices to the introduction of change and development within an organization;
  • Comprehend the fiscal and other relevant relationships among governmental entities; Articulate and utilize ethical decision-making management procedures;
  • Understand public management within an international perspective;
  • Apply public administration principles to organizations;
  • Comprehend and utilize basic personnel management principles in a diverse workforce environment;
  • Utilize practical applications of theories of organizational behavior to public administration;
  • Write effective managerial documents;
  • Apply the analytical tools used in macro policy making to micro situations;
  • Present written and oral information in a professional manner
  • Demonstrate an understanding and utilization of the principles in public administration.

General Program Requirements:

During the first year of the Cheyney University MPA program, introductory intergovernmental and public policy courses introduce students to the theories and building blocks of public administration. These courses establish the governmental context in which public manager‘s work. Required first year courses also focus on the technical aspects of public management, such as GIS and quantitative decision-making skills. The remaining semesters emphasize practical applications of administrative theories and approaches through the internship and specialized concentration courses. In lieu of an internship, Executive MPA students will complete a special project through the Independent Study/Project course that demonstrates their ability to perform at a management level. This course will be completed in lieu of an internship paper.

The final MPA degree program requirement is a comprehensive examination designed to assess the student’s competencies with regard to the program’s learning objectives. The comprehensive exam may be a combination of oral and written questions.

  • 24 hours of core coursework (8 courses)
  • 9 credit hours of elective courses (depending on experience);
  • 6 credit hours for an internship (pre-professional students) or work experience (EMPA students) upon approval of the faculty:
  • Successful completion of a comprehensive exit exam – demonstrating knowledge and master in core and elective areas.
  • Obtain no less than 6 credit hours of their chosen concentration from Cheyney‘s MPA program.
  • MPA students may transfer up to 6 credit hours. Executive track MPA students will receive credit for no more than 12 hours in a combination of transfer and work experience credit.

Comprehensive Exam (0): Completion of a comprehensive examination testing the student’s knowledge of public administration principles.

Program Sequence

A full course load for graduate studies at Cheyney University ranges from 9 to 12 credit hours per semester. Therefore, full-time students can complete the MPA program within 1 ½ - 2 years, especially if they take courses over the summer. MPA students also may complete the sequence by taking advantage of both weekend and regular weekday classes. According to the NASPAA standards, public administration programs should offer courses that build skills in several areas, core curriculum components in public service and organizational management, the application of qualitative and quantitative techniques of analysis, and public policy. The recommended course sequence for full-time Cheyney University MPA students with the appropriate credit hours is as follows:

For those admitted conditionally - XPA 500 Effective Professional Communication