news releases

2005.05.05 > For Immediate Release
contact: Tim Kaldahl - University Affairs
phone: 402.554.3502 - email: tkaldahl@mail.unomaha.edu

UNO to Expand Online Master of Public Administration

Omaha - The University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) will expand its accredited and nationally ranked online Master of Public Administration (MPA) program to include a concentration in local government, beginning with the 2006-07 academic year.

UNO's online MPA has been offered by the School of Public Administration since 2000 and is one of the few online MPA programs accredited by the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration.  The local government concentration has been offered in Omaha for more than 30 years, and now is being made available to students everywhere via the Internet.

"We see a tremendous need for this," said John Bartle, director-designate of the School of Public Administration.  "This degree gives students the knowledge, skills and abilities they need for professional positions in local government, and with this education they can have a major impact on their communities."

In addition to its national accreditation, UNO is highly ranked by U.S. News and World Report.  The 2006 edition ranks UNO 26th in the nation in the broad category of public affairs and 29th in urban management.  In addition, UNO ranks eighth in information technology and 21st in public budgeting and finance.

Students in the concentration will take the seven core courses required of all MPA students and then six courses focused on local government. These include:

·   Municipal administration;

·   Public finance administration;

·   Human resource management;

·   Urban planning;

·   Management information systems; and

·   The "capstone project," which applies the concepts and management tools students have learned to an applied local government topic.

Students can complete the degree as quickly as two years, as courses are offered year-round or they may choose to take just one course at a time to fit with their work schedules, Bartle said.

"The students are required to visit the Omaha campus only once, for a one-day orientation at the beginning of the program," he said.  "Our previous online students have been very satisfied with the how the courses work, and we expect this new concentration to be just as successful."

School of Public Administration faculty all have doctoral degrees in the field, and most have career experience in local government positions such as: city manager, planning director, personnel director, director of human relations, finance director, director of accounting, director of community development and industrial development consultant.  Faculty are leaders of key national organizations in public administration, including the American Society for Public Administration, Association for Budgeting and Financial Management, Section on Environment and Natural Resources Administration, International Institute of Municipal Clerks, Transportation Research Forum and the Public Administration Theory Network, and they also edit the international journals Administrative Theory & Praxis, and Journal of Air Transport.

For more information, contact Meagan Van Gelder at (402) 554-2625 or mvangelder@mail.unomaha.edu. Further information about the online program is available at: http://www.mpaonline.unomaha.edu/.

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