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Public Administration, DPA

Doctor of Public Administration

The University of La Verne’s Doctor of Public Administration (DPA) program, offered by the College of Law and Public Service, is designed for professionals with five or more years of work experience who wish to become the next generation of outstanding civic leaders and professionals. Graduates of the program are ready to assume vital roles as insightful and thoughtful contributors to a broad spectrum of public sector organizations, as well as nonprofits, municipal government, and a variety of quasi-governmental agencies.

Students in the DPA program graduate with valuable skills and knowledge they can immediately apply to real-world problems and career opportunities, including how to:

  • think critically and globally about how to address complex organizational and business problems;
  • assess and set public policy;
  • develop and measure instruments, conduct research, and evaluate the effectiveness of a program or initiative;
  • develop an organizational construct for effective public sector outcomes;
  • apply urban and governance theory to real-world situations;
  • understand economic perspectives in administrative and policy analysis;
  • successfully collaborate and communicate across an organization to achieve goals; and
  • make ethical and sound decisions.

Discover the mission and goals of the DPA program.

DPA Curriculum

The DPA curriculum offers state-of-the-art management courses that emphasizes creativity, responsible leadership, values, and the essential abilities to anticipate, interpret, and manage the rampant changes in the workplace of today and tomorrow.

The program consists of 56 units and can be completed in four to eight years. Students take three classes per term for three years, with classes taking place on Saturdays to accommodate full-time work schedules. The third year is focused on each student’s individual research and following years are for the development of a dissertation.

Continuous enrollment is required in dissertation courses until students complete the dissertation and earn their degree. View the entire DPA curriculum.


The ideal graduate program will have faculty with relevant expertise in the field and who’ve worked in the kinds of places graduates want to work. Our faculty can prepare students to take the next step in their career and education. Learn more about the DPA faculty.

Careers in Public Administration

Most DPA graduates pursue careers as senior-level practitioners; many others go on to work in academia, nonprofits, or civil service at the local, state, or government levels, but career opportunities are limitless for Doctor of Public Administration degree holders.

Possible job titles for DPA graduates include the following:

  • human resources director;
  • executive director;
  • budget analyst;
  • research director;
  • professor;
  • policy analyst;
  • city manager;
  • chief of police and/or fire;
  • hospital administrator; and
  • senior utility executive.

Ready to apply?

La Verne’s public administration program starts in the fall; apply today!

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