Ranked nationally in the top 5% by US News & World Report, the ASU School of Public Affairs is launching an Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA) degree in collaboration with the McCain Institute for International Leadership. The EMPA program is designed to develop an executive leaders’ capacity for effective decision-making.

ASU Online offers start dates every 7.5 weeks.
Multiple enrollment sessions throughout the year.
Required number of credits to complete this degree.

The ASU Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA) is a 19-month online graduate degree program which also features 3-day face-to-face executive sessions in both Phoenix and Washington, D.C. The program is a collaboration between the School of Public Affairs and the McCain Institute for International Leadership.

The EMPA program is designed for public sector leaders throughout the world with a minimum of 5-7 years of progressive leadership experience and for experienced leaders in the nonprofit and private sectors who deal extensively with government officials. You will participate in the program as part of a learning cohort, and the one-course-at-a-time online structure will enable you to maintain a work/life balance as you immerse yourself in each topic. Your learning experience will begin with an orientation and executive session in Phoenix. Approximately one year later, your class will reconvene in Washington, D.C. for a second executive session. The EMPA program will end in Phoenix, where you will present your applied projects.

As a student in the EMPA program, you will expand the breadth and depth of your professional network. The online curriculum will attract a more geographically diverse pool of applicants, both nationally and internationally. The executive sessions in Phoenix and Washington, D.C. will further enable you to develop deeper relationships with your classmates. EMPA students will be selected based on their ability to demonstrate the value they would add to the learning experience of the entire class, and a new cohort will begin each year.

For more information about the Executive MPA Program and its cost, please visit https://ramseyexecutive.asu.edu/content/executive-mpa or contact Diane Mallory at Diane.Mallory@asu.edu or Hector Zelaya at (602) 496-1308.

ASU Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions:

  • Research is the forefront of all academic activities with 20 research centers for advancing research and discovery around challenges that affect us globally
  • Home to ASU’s most diverse student body —and the largest community of first-generation college students
  • #1 university in the U.S. for innovation
  • Named a prestigious global university
  • #2 university in the country for online undergraduate degree programs


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The impressive faculty in the Watts College of Public Service & Community Solutions are inspiring the next generation of public service leaders through real-world solutions to issues around child welfare, safety, city management, human trafficking and water scarcity.


Recent Faculty Highlights Include:

  • Fellow by the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences
  • Fellow of the American Psychological Association
  • Director inducted into the National Academy of Public Administration

Program Summary

Total Hours:


Related Careers

Students in the Executive Master of Public Administration Program already have achieved considerable success in their careers and are seeking to further advance or switch careers. Job titles of applicants admitted into the Executive MPA Class of 2019 include:


Application Deadline: October 31

The next cohort of the Executive MPA Program will begin January 6, 2021. We will begin accepting applications after February 1st. If you plan to apply for financial aid, we recommend you apply to the Executive MPA Program as soon as possible. The earlier you apply to the Executive MPA Program, the sooner your application will be considered by the admissions committee. Please note: applying for financial aid is a separate application process; refer to Cost for more information.

Applicants must fulfill both ASU's minimum requirements and the Executive MPA Program's admission standards:

  • Degree Requirements: You must have earned a bachelor’s degree or higher from a regionally accredited institution in the U.S. or the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor’s degree from an international institution that is officially recognized by that country.
  • GPA requirement: You must have maintained a “B” (3.00 on a 4.00 scale) grade point average in the last 60 semester hours or 90 quarter hours of undergraduate coursework. If you do not meet the minimum GPA requirements, your application may still be considered if your Professional Experience is relatively competitive.
  • Professional Experience: Applicants will be expected to have a minimum of 5-7 years of progressive leadership experience.

Applicants are required to submit:

  1. graduate admission application and application fee
  2. letters of recommendation
  3. official transcripts
  4. resume
  5. proof of English proficiency - Applicants whose native language is not English (regardless of current residency) must provide proof of English proficiency.
  6. personal statement - The personal statement must be 300 words or less and should include what experiences and qualities the applicant would bring to the Executive MPA program. Applicants must also discuss their career objectives and how they plan to leverage the Executive MPA to help achieve those objectives. In addition, applicants may also provide any supplementary information that would strengthen the personal statement.

International Applicants

The application standards for international students are the same as for domestic students, with the exception of submitting proof of English proficiency (for students whose native language is not English).

All international transcripts must be submitted in the original language accompanied by an official English translation. Translations must be literal, complete versions of the originals and must be translated by a university, government official or official translation service. You may not complete your own translation. Photocopies and notarized transcripts are NOT acceptable.

Affording College

Learn about the different types of financial aid and scholarship opportunities available. ASU offers a Cost Calculator, Budget Worksheet and Scholarship Search to make the college planning process easier.

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