Master of Public Administration

The Master of Public Administration (MPA) program is located within the Department of Government in the College of Arts and Sciences on the main campus of New Mexico State University. The MPA degree addresses the specific needs of those pursuing a career in governmental or non-profit administration, and provides preparation for those interested in doctoral level study.  With most courses offered in the evenings, the program is designed for both individuals who recently completed undergraduate degrees and returning students.  It is structured to foster public service leadership by teaching students how to confront theory with practice and practice with theory.

The MPA is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA), a distinction enjoyed by only about one-fourth of all Master’s programs in public administration in the United States .

The MPA is a two-year professional degree. All MPA students complete a common set of six core courses in public management and policy. A minimum of 42 credit hours, which includes either an internship or thesis, and a final oral examination, are required for the MPA. The program is designed in such a way that full-time students who enter in the fall semester can receive their degree in two years or five semesters.

The MPA faculty brings a variety of perspectives to the program and endeavors to share the latest scholarship and the most pressing issues with students through courses and projects. The faculty encourages MPA students to think critically and creatively in addressing public concerns and problems. Case studies and practical exercises provide students opportunities to apply and revise knowledge developed by others. The small size of the program encourages close interaction among MPA students and between faculty and students.

The MPA program also offers joint degrees with the Department of Criminal Justice and the Department of History.  For more information on those joint degree programs, see the links below.

Prospective students are encouraged to review the program requirements in the NMSU Graduate Catalog.  For additional information, contact the MPA Director, Dr. Christina A. Medina, at 575-646-4935 or

MPA Application Deadlines:

October 1, 2017 for Spring 2018 admission

March 1, 2018 for Fall 2018 admission
*** Applications submitted after Priority Deadline are not guaranteed review for assistantships.  

MPA Graduation Rates 

The following data indicate the cohort’s initial enrollment numbers of the current annual report year (ARY) for 2015-2016 – 5 years (students entering the MPA program in summer 2010, fall 2010, and/or spring 2011) and the length of time it took to graduate. The NMSU MPA program defines its program length as 5 semesters or 2.5 years of full-time study (the completion of a minimum of 42 credit hours is required)

ARY-5 data indicate how those enrolled graduated within the program design length, and within 150% and 200% of program design length. Note that the numbers in each successive column are cumulative, meaning that the number of students in the column for 200% of degree length include the numbers of students from the 150% column, plus those that graduated within 150-200% of program length. For example, if 15 students initially enrolled, 10 graduated in 100%, 2 graduated in 150% and 1 graduated in 200%, data would be reported as: 15; 10; 12; 13. NOT 15; 10; 2; 1.

MPA Graduation Rates for the 2010-2011 Matriculating Cohort

Total Number of Students in the ARY-5 Cohort Initially Enrolled Graduated 100% or Degree Program Length Graduated 150% of Degree Program Length Graduated 200% of Degree Program Length
23 8 15 15

MPA Job Placement Statistics

MPA Job Placement Statistics


Below are the job placement statistics (numbers) for students who completed the MPA program in 2014-2015.  These statistics reflect the numbers of students who were employed in the “profession” within six months of graduation, by employment sector.

Employment Placement By Sector for the 2014-2015 MPA Graduating Class

  • National or central government in the same country as the program = 1
  • State, provincial or regional government in the same country as the program =1
  • City, County, or other local government in the same country as the program = 2
  • Nonprofit domestic-oriented = 1
  • Obtaining further education = 1
  • Unemployed (not seeking employment) = 0
  • Unemployed (seeking employment) = 0

Total = 6 

NMSU Graduate School

Apply to the Graduate School at