Preparing the Next Generation of Leaders devoted to the Greater Good

As part of the world-class University of Illinois System, we are dedicated to promoting excellence in public service in Illinois and nationwide. We equip and inspire students who will devote their careers to managing organizations and analyzing and implementing efficient, effective, and equitable policies.

Our Bachelors of Public & Nonprofit Administration,  Master of Public Administration, Master of Public Policy, Masters in Human Services, and Doctor of Public Administration programs emphasize interdisciplinary, experiential (project-based) learning. Our students graduate ready for leadership positions spanning the governmental, nonprofit, and private sectors.

Students can complete the entire degree online, or mix and match online and on-campus classes to fit their needs. The online modalities are taught by the same exceptional faculty as our on-campus courses. All online classes are offered asynchronously, and all on-campus classes start after 6 p.m. so that students can balance their education and their work schedules.

Real-world, applied learning is a key characteristic of the School's academic offerings. We offer our students resume-building, practical experiences, no matter where they live. We regularly supplement our courses with presentations and projects with community leaders, public agencies, and nonprofit organizations.

Our Programs

Bachelors of Public & Nonprofit Administration

Students working on a community mapping project

Available fully online, the BPNA is a management degree with a special focus on the governmental and nonprofit arenas and is for those who want to serve the greater good. You’ll study the basics of policy-making, leadership & management, budgeting, and finance. The program features opportunities for practical learning through access to state government and historical sites, faculty with experience in government, and internship experiences coordinated through the Internship and Prior Learning Program. Visit the BPNA program page for more information.

Master of Public Administration

Picture of Yakashia Barber recently hired as a community specialist for Springfield, Il

Available fully online or on-campus, the MPA is the core professional degree for management and leadership careers in public service. The MPA is an interdisciplinary degree that draws on the fields of management, psychology, economics, finance, and political science. You'll develop the skills and techniques used by managers to implement policies, projects, and programs in the governmental and nonprofit sectors. Our program offers a rich combination of coursework and practical experiences, with many opportunities to begin tackling real-world problems inside and outside of the classroom. Visit the MPA program page for more information.

Master of Public Policy

With online and on-campus options, the MPP is the core professional degree for a career analyzing complex social, political, and economic issues. The coursework covers finance, economics, quantitative analysis, and a variety of policy areas. You'll graduate ready to assess public problems, develop appropriate policy responses, and evaluate program effectiveness. Our location in the Illinois capital city will provide you with many opportunities to engage with the policymaking process inside and outside of the classroom. Visit the MPP program page for more information.

Masters in Human Services

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With online and on-campus options, the MA in Human Services is the core professional degree for a career devoted to improving the quality of life for all people. The coursework teaches students to appreciate contemporary and historic human characteristics, issues, and problems and plan for delivering human services in the future. You'll learn to design, assess, treat, plan for, advocate for, counsel with, manage, and collaborate with individuals, groups, or agencies needing and using human and social services. Our program will provide you with many hands-on opportunities to work with community human services programs. Visit the MA in Human Services program page for more information.

Doctor of Public Administration

With on-campus and remote online (i.e., synchronous online) options, the DPA program is specifically designed as a practitioner-oriented program to meet the educational needs of social sector leaders in governmental and nonprofit positions. Our program will provide you with a high-level academic experience enhancing your analytical skill and sharpening your public management and public policy knowledge. With access to our world-class faculty, you'll leave here equipped to drive social change and have an immediate impact as a practitioner or in academia. Visit the DPA program page for more information.

Don't forget to check out our SPMP Minors & Graduate Certificates as a supplement to your degree program and/or to pursue another area of interest or develop a needed skill