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Master of Public Administration

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Welcome to the MPA program at the College of Charleston.  For those seeking public service careers we offer an advanced professional education in a setting that emphasizes hands-on teaching and the values and culture of a selective, liberal arts institution. Areas of special emphasis include nonprofit administration, arts administration, urban policy and planning, and environmental policy.

We have submitted our Self-Study Report in support of reaccreditation by the National Association of the Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA). This report is available here. We have also received our Interim Report from NASPAA in response to the Self-Study. This is available here and informs the program that we are ready to proceed to a site visit, which will occur in the spring. We have also prepared “Accreditation FAQs,” available here, to explain the accreditation process.

MPA News and Events

  • Course-Instructor evaluations are now available. All MPA students are strongly encouraged to complete these evaluations. Everyone should have received an email titled "Complete your Course-Instructor Evaluations today...Win Graduation Tickets or Priority Registration." This email contains a link to the evaluations. If this link doesn't work or you didn't receive the email, you can also access the evaluations in MyCharleston. Log in to MyCharleston, then go to Academic Services Tab, then select Course-Instructor Evaluations. You can also use the CofC Mobile app’s Instructor Evaluations icon. Course-Instructor evaluations are open until May 3, the last day of exams.

    Why should you complete Course-Instructor Evaluations?

    Instructors crave your thoughtful feedback and constructive criticism to improve their courses.

    Your evaluations benefit future students.

    Your feedback is useful in professors’ promotion/tenure considerations.

  • If you are traveling for research or to a conference this summer, the GSA provides grant funding. A grant amount of up to $500 per student per year may be awarded by the GSA Executive Bard and Faculty Advisors based on the pertinence of the funding request and on the quality of the application materials submitted.To receive the grant, you must complete the GSA Research and Travel Grant Application which is available on the GSA website. The deadline for summer applications is April 23.

  • This month's MPASA Happy Hour will be on April 18 at 6:00 at the Bay Street Biergarten (549 East Bay Street). As always, guests are welcome and light appetizers are provided. We encourage everyone to RSVP through the invitation sent to your student email address.

  • Thank you to everyone who attended last week's MPA Resume Workshop and made the event a huge success. A panel of local professionals from the public and nonprofit sectors, including Meghan Kelly (Town of Mt. Pleasant), Dan Burger (DHEC), Sabrina Madore (U.S. Customs and Border Protection), and Sabra Jewell (Trident United Way), provided advice on resumes, cover letters, and interviewing. We had a great turnout and great discussion. MPASA Treasurer Lauren Ruvalcaba recorded the workshop. The audio files are posted below.

    Part 1
    Part 2
    Part 3
    Part 4


  • The Master of Public Administration Student Association (MPASA) has funding available for professional development activities. We would like to invite everyone to submit an application to by April 23, 2014 to receive consideration. “Professional development activities” are broadly defined as recognized events, memberships, or projects that advance your career. Examples of valid uses are provided below:

    - Travel, lodging, or registration for conferences.

    - Professional association membership dues.

    - Professional training sessions.

    - Academic research.

    - Presentation of academic research. 

    Eligibility: Any student currently registered for MPA classes at the College of Charleston.

    Application Components

    Please submit the following items:

    - MPASA application form (attached)

    - Resume or CV

    You can substitute the MPA application with a Graduate Student Association (GSA) application if you are already applying to GSA for grant funds. 

    If you have any questions, contact Sean Bath at

  • Ryan Miller, CofC MPA Class of 2012, received the Charleston Police Department Probationary Police Officer of the Year award by Mayor Joseph P. Riley and Chief of Police, Gregory G. Mullen on February 7th, 2014. (follow link for more info). All of us here at the MPA program want to congratulate Ryan on this accomplishment!

    Ryan Miller Wins Award

  • Chris Bailey, a student in our Dual MES/MPA Program, is in the news for his outstanding win at the Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Marathon!

    "On Sunday, local graduate student Chris Bailey not only won his first competitive marathon race, he smashed the elite mark of 2:30 and set a course record."

    Congratulations, Chris! Read more here: Local runner Chris Bailey posts 2:28 in first marathon.

  • Mt. Pleasant Director of Planning and Development and MPA alum, Christiane Farrell (Class of 1999), was highlighted in the Moultrie News.

  • On Saturday, February 8, MPA students volunteered with MES students for their 8K Run benefiting Water Missions International. Thank you to everyone who came out and made the event a huge success! Pictured below are MPA students Aaron Holly, Sean Bath, Bekah Cantwell, Mel Campos, Alex Braud, and Megan Shiverdecker. MPA/MES student Chris Bailey won the race. And a special thank you to volunteer coordinator Bekah Cantwell for organizing MPASA's involvement in this event.

    8K Run

  • The Department of Education's Public Service Loan Forgiveness program is available for public servants who have made 120 qualifying payments (ten years) on their student loans. The loans must be issued after October 1, 2007. For more information, please see their website.

  • Please welcome our new students for Spring 2014: Joshua Bloodworth, Chelsea Connor, Desiree Fragoso, Kimberly Gailliard, Jason Lind, Annie O'Brien, Emily Pasko, Sarah Piwinski, Nicholas Rubien, Eric Tuttle, Luke Varn, and Amanda Venable.

    Pictured below: Chelsea Connor, Amanda Venable, Desiree Fragoso, Kimberly Gailliard, Eric Tuttle, and Sarah Piwinski.

    New Students