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Washington State University Factsheets

Master of Public Affairs

Faculty working with Students: 29
Students: 23
Students receiving assistantships or scholarships: 8.7%
Priority deadline:
  • Fall January 10
  • Spring July 1
Campus:
  • Vancouver: Yes
Tests required:
  • 140 GRE (Quantitative) Minimum score
  • 146 GRE (Verbal) Minimum score

Degree Description:

The MPA prepares students for a diverse group of positions in government such as public policy, personnel administration and strategic planning, as well as a range of jobs outside of government service, such as not-for-profit organizations. MPA students may already be employed in these areas and are seeking this degree to advance professionally in the field. These students can expect to hone their skills and receive further training. Alternatively, the Master of Public Affairs degree is also appropriate for students who would like to shift their career tracks and obtain a position in the public and non-profit sector.

The MPA seeks to develop the skills of present and future public administrators and policy analysts in the region to provide them with the tools to meet the challenges of government. In an age when governmental philosophies are continually being redefined, the MPA program is designed to promote professionalism, leadership, inventiveness, and a commitment to public service for government employees in the area of public administration, applied policy studies and health policy administration.

The Master of Public Affairs degree at WSU is designed to accommodate the needs of working students. The degree can be completed entirely in the evenings, and most students often continue to work full time during the day when completing their degree. Seminars are small, ranging from 5-20 students, and typically meet one or two evenings a week over the course of the semester. Class structure includes lectures, small group discussions, and individual and group presentations. The program takes two or more years to complete; the exact length of time required to complete the degree depends on how many classes a student takes each semester.

Admission Requirements:

Applications received after the priority deadline may still be considered. We also require an introductory course in statistics. Applications must include three letters of recommendation,two of which must be from academic sources, transcripts, a resume and a letter of intent specific to the program. Applicants and students should consult the current MPA Handbook for complete information.

Student Learning Outcomes:

All graduates will be able to:

    1.  To lead and manage in public governance.
    2.  To participate in and contribute to the public policy process.
    3.  To analyze, synthesize, think critically, solve problems, and make decisions.
    4.  To articulate and apply a public service perspective.
    5.  To communicate and interact productively with a diverse and changing workforce and citizenry.

Student Opportunities:

Both internal and external internships are offered. Interested students are also offered the opportunity to present at conferences. Students work closely with their chairs and the director of the program on career development.

Faculty Members:

Campbell, Joseph Keim, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Clayton, Cornell William, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

His research interests include public law, American government, and political theory, and he is currently co-editor of Political Research Quarterly.

Cottam, Martha L, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

political psychology, international politics, U.S.-Latin American relations, and North-South conflict and cooperation.

Drapela, Laurie, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Probation officer discretion; Sociological impacts of prison siting; Implementation and operation of therapeutic courts; and Offending desistance trajectories among youth.

Finley, Susan, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Poverty and homelessness, systemic barriers to educational access and equity, social and environmental justice policy and practice. Recent projects focus on the politics of advocacy and community-based, participatory research.

Glazebrook, Patricia, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

ecofeminism, ancient philosophy, philosophy of technology, environmental philosophy and climate change and climate justice

Goldsby, Michael, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Gordillo, Luz-Maria, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Kabasenche, William Paul, Ph.D.

Serves as: co-chair on graduate committee

Klein, Tracy Ann, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Leeb, Claudia, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

contemporary political theory and philosophy, 19th- and 20th-century continental political thought, feminist political theory, Frankfurt School of Critical Theory, psychoanalysis, democratic theory, history of political thought

Long, Carolyn Nestor, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

American Institutions, Public Law and American Public Policy.

Lopez, Anthony, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Evolutionary Politics, Coalitional Aggression

Maclean, Alair, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Aging, Life Course, Military, Social Stratification

Mazur, Amy Gale, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Her research interests focus on comparative feminist policy issues with a particular emphasis on France.

Mosher, Clayton, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Crime and deviance, law and society; individual and structural correlates of substance use and abuse, and the treatment of substance abuse; drug policies, criminal sentencing, and racial issues in the criminal justice system.

Myers, Michael W, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Nice, David C, Ph.D.

Serves as: co-chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

presidency and legislative behavior, American politics, state and local politics, public budgeting, research methods, political parties

Preston, John Thomas, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Ridout, Travis Nelson, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Salamone, Michael, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Shier, David, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Stehr, Steven D, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Stephan, Mark, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Stichter, Matt, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Thiers, Paul, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Townsen, Ashly Adam, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Tripp, Thomas M, PhD

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Psychology of workplace conflict, with an emphasis on justice, revenge and forgiveness.

Wood, Darryl Scott, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Police and prosecutorial processing of sexual assault and domestic violence cases in rural Alaska, Police efforts to reduce illegal alcohol trafficking into Alaska Native villages.

Contact Information:

Jamie Hankins
Vancouver, Washington
360-546-9640