Pave a New Path in the Public Sector

The path to public good is personal and varies for each individual, but Master of Public Administration careers and others in the nonprofit sector present incredible opportunities to identify specific needs in a community and find ways to solve them. A Postbaccalaureate Certificate in Nonprofit Management or an advanced degree like a Master of Public Administration (MPA) demonstrates your pursuit of advanced knowledge, desire to lead, and a set of professional skills needed to succeed in a variety of public service and nonprofit roles.

So why not set yourself on the path for career growth and real impact? Join a growing field that lets you create social change for the common good within communities, families and individual lives.

Study alongside and form deep connections with a diverse group of peers from a wide range of professional backgrounds. Allow your preconceptions to be challenged and your knowledge base broadened, as your classmates demonstrate how public administration jobs function across different sectors and fields. Lead the charge toward change and greater good by building the skills and confidence to succeed in a number of public administration careers, as well as nonprofit management roles, with Kent State’s online graduate programs.

Because master’s degree holders earn, on average, nearly 20 percent more in salary than those with only a bachelor’s degree,1 a Master of Public Administration degree could help you reach salary outcomes at or near the upper end of these ranges.

MPA Careers by the Numbers


Our alumni reported an average salary increase of 27 percent after completing the program.2


Average MPA graduate salary3

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Salary ranges for key Master of Public Administration careers:

Executive director4
Human resources director5
Director of development, nonprofit6
Program manager, nonprofit7
Program coordinator, nonprofit8

What Can You Do with an MPA?

Government Career Paths

With nearly 22 million jobs in the U.S.,9 the government is the largest collective employer of MPA graduates.10 MPA graduates can go on to pursue jobs—at all levels of government—that include:

  • City manager
  • Public works director
  • Chief of police
  • Government program manager
  • Urban or regional planner
  • Social and community service manager
  • Chief librarian
  • Grants coordinator

Popular Cities for MPA Graduate1

  • New York City
  • Washington, D.C.
  • Seattle
  • Atlanta
  • Chicago

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Nonprofit Career Paths

At 12.4 million people strong,11 the American nonprofit sector is a robust market. Online graduates of the master’s program or the nonprofit management certificate program can go on to pursue nonprofit jobs that include:

  • Director of advancement
  • Director of development
  • Executive director
  • Program director
  • Services director
  • Development manager
  • Grants coordinator

Employment Rates Within Six Months of Graduation, By Sector10

  • Government (all levels): 49%
  • Nonprofit sector: 23%
  • Private sector: 17%
  • Military: 4%
  • Other: 7%

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Make an Impact on Public Administration

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Gain Career Traction

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An Immersive Curriculum

Designed for busy working professionals and students seeking to expand their career options.

Featured Article

October 11, 2021
MPA stands for Master of Public Administration. As the name suggests, most people who pursue this degree work in the public sector which includes any part of a state or national economy that is tied to public programs or services and is controlled by the government.
September 28, 2021
An online MPA degree will substantially increase your earning potential and prepare you to be a top-tier agent of positive change. Keep reading to learn all the details about earning an online Master of Public Administration or MPA degree, from a full program description to the excellent career options you can look forward to as a master of public administration.
September 27, 2021
Grad school can open a world of opportunities. People interested in strengthening skills to head an organization might need to make a decision between more than one degree, specifically: a Master of Public Administration (MPA) or Master of Business Administration (MBA).
August 23, 2021
As with jobs in all industries, jobs in the public sector have certain advantages and disadvantages. While each person might have their own opinion of what constitutes a positive or negative aspect of any career, read on for our take on the pros and cons of working in the public sector.
June 24, 2021
In 2020, the nature of work changed rapidly. The pace of change has only continued to accelerate in 2021, with many companies keeping hybrid work schedules—a reality that seemed a distant dream prior to the pandemic. Fortunately for many learners hoping to achieve greater economic prosperity, higher education is changing, as well.
June 23, 2021
If recent newspaper headlines are to be believed, many people are wondering if the U.S. government is getting too large. While it’s true that over 15% of the workforce is involved in the military, public and national service, the size of the U.S. government proportionate to the total population has actually shrunk in the last 50 years.
April 08, 2021
Before you commit to an advanced degree such as a master's of public administration, it's important to consider whether it will be worth the investment of your time and money. For some people, an MPA program can be a life-changing experience that prepares them for professional success and greater personal fulfillment. For others, an MPA may not be the right choice.
March 26, 2021
It’s easy to think of technology as flashy and fun: the newest TikTok video, the latest virtual background, the most thrilling special effects. Though we may not realize it, technology also plays an enormous role in the progress and achievements of the public sector.
March 25, 2021
“Broadly speaking, the public sector refers to any part of a state or national economy that is tied to public programs or services and is controlled by the government.” You may find public sector employment opportunities in the military, law enforcement, organizations managing infrastructure (public roads, bridges, tunnels, water supply, sewers, electrical grids, telecommunications, and so on), departments of public transit or public education, and in healthcare and the government itself.
Admissions and Application Deadlines
Priority Application Deadline
Spring 2022 Semester
Application Deadline
Spring 2022 Semester
First Day of Class
Spring 2022 Semester

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2. Based on a limited sample of self-reported data from Kent State alumni from graduating cohorts between 2016-2020.
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