Master of Public Administration Program Profile

More about Master of Public Administration
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Department Mission

Through the Master of Public Administration program, Dordt seeks to cultivate and equip Christian leaders to have a felt impact toward justice in the public sector through robust engagement in all areas of public life. Dordt’s desire to pursue this program is rooted in the tradition of Abraham Kuyper and his model for deep engagement in the public square. Kuyper saw the political sphere playing a critical role in fostering and protecting the flourishing of all other aspects of our communal and cultural lives. Because of this, it is critical that Christians engage in this sphere on a deep and skilled level. Much of the hard work of governing is handled today by administrators, not legislators, and the protecting and vindicating hand of justice is wielded most often by people in uniform, rather than politicians in their offices. Finally, if the state is to foster human flourishing, it can do this best not by providing all of our wants and needs, but by partnering with our communities as local and national organizations do some of the most tangible good in pursuing that common task. To this end then, serving the kingdom in this common sphere requires deep engagement in more than the openly political, but the administrative tasks of civil government, criminal justice, and nonprofit organizations as well.

Program Strengths

High Quality – Our courses are taught by subject matter experts from a variety of fields that touch on public administration, including political science, social work, criminal justice, law, business, and communications. We also work with experts in online pedagogy and regularly review our material to make sure that our coursework meets high standards of excellence in terms of both form and content.

Flexible – Our courses are taught in a 100% online, primarily asynchronous format that allows students to structure their workload in a way that works best for you while still staying in regular touch with your professor and peers.

Affordable – Our per credit costs are highly competitive, typically beating even in-state tuition costs at a large public institution.

Practical – In designing every one of our courses, we identify projects and practices that will have immediate, real-world application for our students who are actively serving in the public sector. We balance theory with practice from the perspective that theories that you can see worked out in every day life will be more meaningful than pure abstractions. We do this by empowering you to adapt and apply your learning to your particular needs and by cultivating a lively online community where you can compare notes and challenges with your peers.

Thoroughly Christian – We aim to have students think deeply about how your personal calling can coherently connect with your Christian perspective on the public sector as a whole. Our goal is to foster Christian engagement that is mindful of individual, institution, and society in ways that both respect our proper roles and limitations and reflect our God’s character.

Student Outcomes

As a student in our MPA program, you will:

  • Develop skills in critical thinking that will equip you to analyze structure and direction in the field of public administration
  • Discern your talents, tendencies, and challenges as a leader
  • Understand key theories and trends in organizational leadership and management
  • Be equipped to make wise, strategic, tactical, and logistical decisions in managing organizations
  • Uncover the ways worldview and practices inform and shape one another, and
  • Articulate how biblical principles drive sound action in public administration.