Fuel Your Passion for Public Service

Lead the way in local, state and national government. Serve your community to create meaningful change. 

We are the oldest graduate-level public administration program in the greater Cincinati/northern Kentucky region and ranked in the Top 200 programs by "U.S. News and World Report" for 2018. 

US News Ranking graphic

Meet Our Students


Fellowship of her dreams

Christina Ingle enrolled in the MPA program in Fall 2015 with the dream of launching a career in local government management, and she finished the program by being selected for the most prestigious fellowship in the field.

Read More

Christina was one of 3,000 students who applied for the 2017 Local Government Management Fellowship sponsored by the International City Management Association (ICMA), and she was only one of about 50 chosen for a fellowship -- a 1.6% selection rate. Fellows are placed in full-time local government positions where they develop real-world management skills. Many go on to become town, city and county managers.

She is serving as Management Analyst with the Town of Munster, Indiana, in the Chicago metropolitan area. Munster is home to Three Floyds Brewing Company, three lakes, 10 parks and 20,000+ residents ... including one very happy and proud NKU MPA alumna.


MPA students assist museum

The city of Newport, KY is developing a museum to document historical eras in the city and region. Two MPA students helped move the museum forward with their capstone projects.

Read More

The City of Newport Museum will be located in the old Southgate Street School, an historic building located behind Hofbrauhaus that served as the African-American school for Campbell County from the 1870s to mid-1950s. It is expected to have an exhibit on the relatively peaceful desegregation of schools in the 1950s. Other exhibits may focus the city's role as a military base during the 1800s ("Newport Barracks") and its thriving but illegal gambling scene from the 1920s to 1960s ("Sin City"). 

MPA student Charles Powell drafted a set of collection management policies, geared toward the effective acquisition and  conservation of artifacts. Fitzgerald Chibamu created a plan for a travelling exhibition that could be taken to K-12 schools to teach history lessons as well as other local organizations to raise awareness about the museum.


Supporting Latino Families

As Patrol Commander for the Covington Police Department, Amanda Donelan witnessed an increase in immigrants, who don't speak English as their primary language, and the challenges that sometimes result.

Read More

When she was on patrol one night, she approached a Latino man who, unbeknownst to her, had been stabbed in the back, literally. The man was afraid to report his injury to police, but his friend turned him around, and Amanda saw blood streaming down his back and legs.

Shortly thereafter, the city of Covington designated Amanda as liaison to Supporting Latino Families (SLF), a recently-formed group of local professionals working to improve communication and service delivery for Spanish-speaking populations. At the time, she was a student in the MPA program.

After serving as liaison to SLF for a year or so and moving through the MPA program, Amanda decided to work with the group for her Capstone project. Specifically, she helped formalize the group by applying for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status, developing bylaws and a strategic plan, and writing a grant application.

There's still much to be done to help immigrant families in Northern Kentucky. But Amanda's project has gone far to create a more strong and sustainable organization to assist them.



As an MPA student, you will actively engage in academic work through service learning and capstone projects that have direct impacts, such as developing emergency management plans for city governments and writing grant applications that result in funding for nonprofit organizations.

Our alumni go on to have successful and fulfilling careers that focus on serving people and improving communities in Northern Kentucky/Greater Cincinnati and beyond.

Program Features

no GRE

Students with an undergraduate GPA 3.0 or higher and in-career students with 5+ years in the public or related sector are not required to take the GRE for admission into the program.   


Our Diversity Scholarship is targeted at prospective students with a demonstrated commitment to enhancing the understanding and appreciation of diverse populations.


We offer strong connections to government and nonprofit leaders as part-time faculty, guest speakers and advisory board members.

work life balance

The MPA program is built for mature, career-oriented people. We offer small classes delivered both in-person and online on week nights and Saturdays.

hands-on opportunities

Service learning, student philanthropy and study abroad opportunities enhance your academic experience and your résumé.

program length

This 39-credit hour program will prepare students to manage and lead in government agencies, hospitals, universities and other nonprofit organizations; May be completed in 30 with credit for prior coursework.


Northern Kentucky University - Master of Public Administration
FH 572B, Highland Heights, KY 41099
Email mpa@nku.edu / Phone 859.572.5326