Master of Public Administration

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Master of Public Administration

Meet today’s challenges with real-world solutions

The Full-time Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree delivers the specialized knowledge, practical experience, and valuable connections students need to achieve their career goals in just one year. This 9-course, 9 c.u. program, which includes a capstone project and summer internship, is designed for early career professionals and individuals looking to pivot into the public administration or nonprofit sectors. Full-time Fels students are admitted into a small cohort of emerging public leaders who work closely with Penn faculty and leading policy practitioners to translate their classroom experiences into real-world results.

Full-time MPA courses

Our core curriculum provides students with the essential tools they need to become the public managers and leaders of tomorrow. The fall term focuses on the core concepts and analytical tools needed for effective public administration. In the spring term, students learn the skills they need to translate knowledge into practical solutions. Working with their advisor, students select one elective class per term in Fels or other schools throughout Penn to dig deeper into particular policy areas of interest or learn other valuable skills for their future careers. In the summer, students take everything they’ve learned in the classroom and put it to the test in the real world through their capstone and internship.


Through the capstone project, students synthesize what they’ve learned across their coursework to demonstrate the ability to produce change in the public sector. With guidance from Fels advisors, students evaluate and analyze a real-world challenge facing a government or non-profit organization in order to propose practical solutions.


In the summer, students put their knowledge to use, develop vital skills, and build a professional network through an internship with a government or nonprofit organization. Our career advising team helps students identify internship opportunities to align with their professional goals. Students who are interested in more work experience may consult with our career services advisor to identify an academic-year internship or project-based work in addition to a summer internship.

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Fels Institute of Government

The Fels Institute of Government
3814 Walnut St. 
Philadelphia, PA 19104

(215) 898-7326