The Master of Public Administration Online from USC Price

Pursue an Online MPA from a top-ranked Public Affairs School

The USC MPA program’s primary mission is to educate professionals to assume leadership positions for public service and to improve the state of the art in the governance and management of public and nonprofit organizations.

The USC Sol Price School of Public Policy has been widely recognized for its history of academic excellence.

USC Price’s Master of Public Administration program is also accredited by the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs and Administration, an organization that recognizes the best public service training and education programs in the country.

No. 3

Best Public Affairs School¹

Why Public Administration?

Professionals in this industry help address some of our nation’s most pressing issues, including health care accessibility, immigration, infrastructure, urban development and social policy.

Public administrators run government agencies, nonprofits and nongovernmental organizations at the ground level. They are experts at identifying areas for improvement in their communities and organizations and ensuring change is implemented. They help carry out policies that keep systems running efficiently — across all sectors. 

Specifically, they might:

  • Evaluate, develop and implement policy
  • Communicate with community leaders and constituents to identify issues
  • Ensure strategic solutions are implemented to systemic challenges
  • Track, allocate and raise funds

Careers in Public Administration

An online Master of Public Administration from USC Price can lead to advancement across a wide array of industries and professions. Nonprofits, government agencies, public policy organizations and private sector businesses all have openings that MPA graduates could fill.

To learn more about how this degree can help you advance your career across the sectors and the types of jobs that are available in your desired industry, visit our Careers page.

Be A Leader in Your Community

Advance your career in public service with a degree from USC Price.

The Online Master’s Curriculum

USC’s Master of Public Administration online, which delivers classes face-to-face through our videoconferencing platform, will equip you to enter or advance within this field. You will study topics like:

  • policy and program evaluation
  • public financial management and budgeting
  • urban planning and social policy
  • local government and nonprofit management

With two certificate options, the curriculum is designed to allow maximum flexibility so you can tailor your education to your career goals.

24 months to complete

2 certificate options

2 residencies

1 capstone

Learn more about our MPA curriculum.


A lot of other programs I've been in try to make you into one specific type of leader. This program allows you to choose what type of leader you want to be.

— Trenton Jackson, USC MPA 2016 Graduate, Online Program


At USC Price, we seek students who are motivated to effect positive change in their communities. We have three start dates per year: January, May and September.

We require a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university and GRE/GMAT scores to apply, but test waivers are available for those with five or more years of managerial work experience and a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

During each application period, the admissions team offers an Early Decision deadline, which allows you to receive a decision and start planning for your future sooner. If you apply for the Early Decision deadline, we will waive the $90 application fee.

Veteran Services

The program is also a great fit for veterans looking to transition to civilian work. USC has been named the No. 5 best college for veterans by U.S. News & World Report.²

USC Price is also proud to partner with the Veterans Benefits Administration, providing VA Yellow Ribbon benefits to qualified students. Our curriculum equips veterans with the foundation they need to move into public administration work while allowing them to customize their course sequence to the industry they’d like to enter.

Priority Application Deadline

October 4, 2019

Final Application Deadline

November 8, 2019

Classes Start

January 2020

Don’t Miss the Next Deadline

Your community needs you. Take the next step with USC Price.

Program Delivery

Public administration is undergoing a digital transformation. In order to advance as a public servant, you will need to be able to communicate (with organizations and public citizens), share information and leverage data virtually. Our online coursework will equip you to work and communicate in a digital environment.

Immersive coursework and live classes are delivered through our online platform. Upon enrollment, you will receive a complimentary WeWork Global Access Membership, which allows access to any of WeWork’s innovative co-working and office spaces in cities around the world.

Learn more about the online experience.

Your Online MPA Network

Earning your MPA online doesn’t just mean advancing your education—and career—from anywhere. It also means joining a rich network of USC Price faculty, alumni and students who have been driving change in their communities for decades.

A Distinguished Team of Faculty

The USC Price School has a team of full-time faculty members from a diverse array of disciplinary backgrounds and research interests. Our professors are current and former:

  • consultants
  • economists
  • research directors
  • policy advocates

Faculty are passionate about preparing the next generation of public servants—and will be available to you inside and outside the MPA classroom to provide academic and professional guidance and mentorship.

Learn more about our faculty.

Dedicated Cohort Coaches

The cohort coach program, which is unique to USC, pairs you with a USC alum to serve as your guide throughout the MPA program. Your coach can: 

  • Advise you on time management, study skills and best practices in MPA online coursework
  • Provide guidance for interacting with your professors
  • Help you explore career options and expand your Trojan network

These USC coaches help ensure your online graduate experience is as seamless as possible.

An Extensive Alumni Network

USC Price alumni are united for life—and stay closely involved with the school long after graduation.

“The Trojan Family is just that: an actual family. We're so close knit. We look out for each other. It feels like they're my brothers and sisters.”

— Trenton Jackson, USC MPA 2016 Graduate, Online Program

“The Trojan Family is not just USC Price students. It's also the faculty and the alumni. I have the privilege of being an alumna and being able to work with the current students and mentor them.”

—Jennifer Page, USC MPA 2014 Graduate, Online Program

“There is a lot of wisdom in each cohort here. I learn from them every day and hope they learn from me, too. I hope we can help continue to build the Trojan Family.”

—Steve Ozinga, USC MPA 2017 Graduate, Online Program

Take the Next Step

Request information today to learn more about the online Master of Public Administration program from USC Price or contact an admissions counselor at Phone Number: 1-855-637-1999 or