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Masters of Public Administration - Executive Track

Degree Offered: Master of Public Administration (MPA)

Program Description: The mission of the Masters of Public Administration program at North Carolina Central University is to prepare students from diverse backgrounds to become professionals with the ability to ethically apply the knowledge and skills required to lead and manage.

The Department of Public Administration seeks to prepare students for leadership and management roles in the public sector through a Master of Public Administration program with multiple tracks.  In order to meet student needs, the MPA degree is currently offered in two tracks a General MPA track and the Executive MPA track.

The EMPA track is limited to candidates with four (4) years of full time professional, executive or supervisory experience in the public, private or nonprofit sectors.  The Executive MPA track students range from thirty (30) to fifty-five (55) years old and generally have ten (10) or more years of work experience.

EMPA students continue their employment while completing their course of study in an 18-month period.  The EMPA for North Carolina Central University is offered during two (2) required summer experiences and three (3) full semester experiences. Class sessions are held on weekends.  Classes begin on Friday at 3:00 p.m. and are held for eight (8) hours on Saturday.  The second summer experience includes a mandatory trip abroad that is paid for as a part of a student’s tuition.

Students are admitted into the EMPA track in a cohort comprised of between twenty (20) and twenty-five (25) students.  Each cohort participates in the same set of learning experiences. The requirements for graduation for all MPA track are the same. Since all EMPA students have significant professional experience they are exempted from the Internship I course requirement.

EMPA students apply during the Spring semester for classes that begin during the Summer semester.  The students enter and proceed through their course of study as members of a cohort.  Students take the courses that are currently a part of the existing MPA curriculum.  However, the pedagogical methodology and lesson design are modified to recognize the needs of an experienced public sector leader.  Courses are presented in modular format utilizing the case study method. Given this teaching approach, some courses extend for more than a semester.  Most of the classes are taught in teams to insure students are exposed to faculty that are current public sector professionals and faculty with strong academic grounding.  The program is structured so that typically, students are able to earn a degree in 18 months.

The learning objectives and the requirements for graduation are the same for all MPA tracks. However, the Executive MPA track requires that all students take the same courses in the same section.  The MPA degree at NCCU requires students to:

  1. Complete a minimum of 47 semester hours of graduate courses, with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher in order to graduate. No more than six hours of the 47 may be from 4000-level courses.
  2. Successfully submit a Digital Student Learning Portfolio of developmental experiences (compact disk)
  3. Successfully present a Student Learning Portfolio before a panel of faculty

Required Standardized Test: None

Minimum Admissions Requirements: Admissions into the EMPA program is based upon an evaluation of the “whole person”.  The academic background of the applicant, the personal statement, the professional background, letters of evaluation, the interview and the applicant’s resume determine an applicant’s admission. 

The personal statement is critical to the application review process. As a separate document, all EMPA applicants must provide a personal statement in compliance with the application process.  A minimum of two letters of evaluation is required of EMPA applicants.  Also applicants must send a C.V. or a resume in hardcopy with the main application package and participate in an interview process.

Additional Admissions Criteria: None

Application Deadline: June 30 for the cohort beginning July of the same year

Prerequisites: None

Number of Graduate Faculty: 10 and adjunct faculty

Number of Students: 20-45

Location of Course Offerings: Durham, Pinehurst and Rocky Mount, North Carolina and Liberia West Africa

Graduate Program Director:

Donnell Scott, Ed.D
EMPA Director