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In Florida, students seeking public administration training will find associate, bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree programs as well as undergraduate and graduate certificates and degree program minors. Dual programs, combining a master's degree in public administration with a related bachelor's degree, a related master's degree or a Juris Doctorate, are also available. Degree specializations may be available in public policy, public safety administration, government, health administration or nonprofit management. In addition to completing courses in administrative laws and ethics, budgeting and finance, organizational behavior, public relations, regional planning and leadership, students may be required to complete an internship experience. Public administration graduates could pursue positions as city managers, public policy analysts, health care administrators or political scientists.
Florida Atlantic University
At this Boca Raton school, students will find many degree options at the School of Public Administration. Undergraduate students can prepare for careers in the public sector by earning a Bachelor of Public Management, or minoring in this area. This school also offers a Master of Public Administration (MPA). Coursework for the MPA covers public organization theory, financial management, public policy analysis, law and procedures and ethics. A capstone course and elective classes are also required. Students interested in research, teaching or consulting can earn a PhD in Public Administration with a concentration in administrative theory and inquiry, public policy studies, organizational studies or public budgeting and financial administration.
Florida International University
This school, located in Miami, offers both undergraduate and graduate public administration programs through the School of International and Public Affairs. Undergraduate students can earn a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Public Administration or minor in this field. Core courses for the BA cover policy, quantitative skills, public management and electives. Graduate students can earn a Master of Public Administration by attending a weeknight, weekend or executive program. Students may also earn a Seoul MPA through a partnership with Chinese institutions. Joint Juris Doctor/MPA and Master of Science in Criminal Justice/ MPA programs are also offered. Students interested in earning a graduate certificate have the option to study international and comparative public administration.
Florida State University
At this Tallahassee school, students can study public administration at the Reubin O'D. Asker School of Public Administration and Policy. Program options include a five-year combined bachelor's degree and Master of Public Administration, a public administration minor and an undergraduate certificate in public administration. The combined undergraduate and MPA program is open to students in all majors. This school also offers a Master of Public Administration and graduate certificate in this subject. The MPA program covers public organizations, financial management, policy development and human resource management. Students may also earn a PhD. All PhD candidates must choose a specialization in institutions and governance, public management or public policy. A graduate minor in public administration is also available.
Indian River State College
This Fort Pierce school offers a public administration track to students pursuing an Associate in Arts and a Bachelor of Science in Public Administration with a public policy and leadership concentration. The associate's degree program includes foundation and general education coursework that prepares students to transfer to a four-year program at a state university. Coursework covers macroeconomics and American government. The bachelor's degree program covers organizational behavior and administration, urban and regional planning, leadership, public relations, budgeting and finance, policy development and administrative law. Students in this program must complete a capstone course during their final semester.
Nova Southeastern University
At this Fort Lauderdale school, students can earn a Master of Public Administration through the H. Wayne Huizenga School of Business and Entrepreneurship. Students can complete this program in 18 months by taking classes on campus or online. Courses cover public administration theory and application, administrative law and ethics, leadership, finance, statistical analysis and strategic planning. This school also offers a dual degree option that allows students to enter a graduate business program immediately following the completion of their bachelor's degree. Students who choose this option can earn their bachelor's degree and MPA in five or five-and-a-half-years.
St. Petersburg College
This school, located in Clearwater, offers a Bachelor of Science in Public Policy and Administration. Major courses cover organizational communication, social problems and policy, public finance, policy leadership, state and local government, policy and ethics and a public policy capstone. Students must also complete 15 credits of elective coursework. This school also offers a Bachelor of Applied Science in Public Safety Administration to students interested in a more specialized area of public administration. Students in this program complete many of the same foundation and elective courses as those in the public policy and administration program. Additional coursework is selected from a track focused on criminal justice, fire science, emergency medical services, emergency management and homeland security, or completed across multiple disciplines.
University of Central Florida
This Orlando-based schools offers both undergraduate and graduate public administration programs. Students can earn a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Public Administration, graduate certificate, Master of Public Administration, dual MPA and Master of Nonprofit Management or a PhD with a public administration track. An undergraduate minor in is also available. Both bachelor's degree programs contain the same core of public administration courses. Curriculum covers public administration in American society, administrative theory, research in public administration, fiscal management and professional writing. The MPA program includes courses in management, budgeting and research, and concludes with a capstone course. Students in the PhD program study research methods, take specialization courses and complete a dissertation.
University of Miami
Located in Coral Gables, this school offers a variety of master's degree programs in public administration. Students with an undergraduate degree may earn a Master of Public Administration. In addition to core and elective coursework, this program requires that students complete an internship. Undergraduate students at this school may pursue a combined bachelor and MPA program. This option allows students to earn both degrees in five years, rather than the six it would take if each were earned separately. This school also offers a combined MPA and Master of Public Health that can be completed in two-and-a-half years.
University of North Florida
This Jacksonville school offers an undergraduate minor in public administration and an MPA through the political science and public administration department. Within in the undergraduate minor, students can follow a general public administration track, public administration for political science majors track or select a fast track for the MPA program. The fast track option allows students to complete the MPA program with nine fewer credit hours than traditional graduate students. Core curriculum for the master's program includes research methods, human resources, budgeting and finance and ethics. Students may choose a concentration in local government, public policy, nonprofit management or health administration, or pursue a generalist option.
University of South Florida - Main Campus
At this school, located in Tampa, students can concentrate their studies in public administration while working towards a Bachelor of General Studies, or earn a Master of Public Administration. The undergraduate concentration requires students to complete 18 credits in public administration. Required courses cover nonprofit organizations and public policy, public financial administration, personnel and supervision and resource management. The MPA program includes core and elective courses and a capstone course. Students without prior professional experience in public administration must complete an internship. The core curriculum covers research methods, public administration theory and practice, ethics, budgeting, policy analysis and implementations and management. This school also offers a doctoral minor in public administration.
Degree requirements vary between fields, but most careers require a bachelor's degree. Some employers prefer candidates with master's degrees. Public administration programs from the ten largest colleges and universities in Florida are described below.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type and Setting||Public Administration Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2015-2016)|
|Florida Atlantic University||Four-year, public; small city|| Undergraduate minor in Public Management, Bachelor of Public Management,
PhD in Public Administration
|$4,831 in-state, $17,276 out-of-state*|
|Florida International University||Four-year, public; suburban|| Bachelor of Arts in Public Administration,
MPA, Executive MPA, Seoul MPA, Joint Juris Doctor and MPA, Joint Master of Science in Criminal Justice and MPA, Graduate Certificate in International and Comparative Public Administration
|$6,556 in-state, $18,954 out-of-state*|
|Florida State University||Four-year, public; midsize city|| Undergraduate minor in public administration, Undergraduate certificate in public administration, Five-year combined bachelor's degree and MPA,
Graduate minor in public administration, Graduate certificate in public administration, MPA,
|$6,507 in-state, $21,673 out-of-state*|
|Indian River State College||Four-year, public; suburban|| Associate in Arts - Public Administration track,
Bachelor of Science in Public Administration with a public policy and leadership concentration
|$2,764 in-state, $10,201 out-of-state*|
|Nova Southeastern University||Four-year, private; suburban|| Dual bachelor's degree and MPA,
|St. Petersburg College||Four-year, public; small city||Bachelor of Science in Public Policy and Administration, Bachelor of Applied Science in Public Safety Administration||$3,352 in-state, $11,607 out-of-state*|
|University of Central Florida||Four-year, public; suburban|| Undergraduate minor, Bachelor of Arts in Public Administration, Bachelor of Science in Public Administration,
Graduate Certificate, MPA, dual MPA and Master of Nonprofit Management,
PhD with a public administration track
|$6,368 in-state, $22,467 out-of-state*|
|University of Miami||Four-year, private; suburban|| Five year Bachelor of Art/MPA,
MPA, Dual MPA\ Master of Public Health
|University of North Florida||Four-year, public; large city|| Undergraduate minor in public administration,
|$6,394 in-state, $20,798 out-of-state*|
|University of South Florida-Main Campus||Four-year, public; large city|| Bachelor of General Studies with a concentration in public administration,
Doctoral minor in public administration
|$6,410 in-state, $17,324 out-of-state*|
Source: *NCES College Navigator