MPA Concentrations

Trying to decide which MPA focus is best for your professional goals? Read more about each one - Public Management, Ethical Leadership, and Health Care Administration -  and their associated courses below.


The Public Management focus challenges students to explore pragmatic and ethical implications of contemporary approaches to public economics, nonprofit management, and managing diverse organizations in an increasingly integrated global public sector. The Public Management focus allows students to critically examine shifts in the management of public programs and strategically assess their value. This track is ideal for students interested in a generalist approach to public administration and the courses address issues central to the missions of the MPA program at Marist, as well as government and nonprofit organizations world-wide.

Public Management Courses

MPA 502 Economics in the Public Sector

Economics in the Public Sector introduces the role of government in national and sub-national economies, privatization, inter-governmental fiscal relationships, economic analysis techniques such as cost/benefit analysis, and social and political considerations in public economic and fiscal activity.

MPA 521 Management in Nonprofit Organizations

As more programs are operated by nonprofit organizations, public managers must under-stand the “third sector.” This course provides an overview of the history, structure, and role of the nonprofit sector, including how nonprofit agencies differ from public and for-profit entities in mission, governance, funding, and staffing, and will consider cur-rent issues facing the nonprofit sector.

MPA 616 Global Issues in Public Administration

Global Issues in Public Administration is designed to cover topics of contemporary and controversial nature, focusing on globalization and international aspects of government.



Over the last few decades, ethical leadership has taken on increasing importance. The world’s economy has been shaken by the outcomes of large organizations led by unethical people. To address these critical issues, we have developed the Ethical Leadership concentration for the MBA program. Students will be required to take a series of four courses that will delve into the most important areas of developing the effective, ethical leader.

Through the sequence of required courses, students will learn the basic tenants of leadership and ethical decision-making which are the foundation of ethical leadership. Students will learn to apply these concepts throughout the curriculum and in their lives. The goal of the concentration is to prepare the student to be an effective leader and to face the challenges of the ethical dilemmas they will face in their careers.

Ethical Leadership Courses

MPA 530  Organizational Theory and Change

Organizational Theory and Change covers the theory and practice of improving organizational effectiveness through planned, systematic interventions and change. Typical topics include analyzing organizational cultures, structures, processes, and capabilities; designing needed interventions; and assessing the motivational, educational, and other tools needed for successful implementation.

MBA 684 Leadership, Power and Influence

This course will examine the theory and practice of leadership in organizations. Traditional and modern theories of leadership will be explored, as well as the practical application of these theories in the work place. In addition to covering the traditional concepts of leadership in organizations, this course will take an in-depth look at the power and influence a leader has over the organization and its members. Pre-requisites: MPA 530

MBA 685 Negotiations and Conflict Management

This course is an introduction to the theory and practice of interpersonal bargaining. The course will examine types of bargaining strategies, planning for negotiations, how to handle negotiation breakdowns, communications, power, persuasion, and ethics in negotiations, as well as international dimensions of bargaining. The pedagogical approach will largely be through experiential learning exercises based on weekly readings. Evaluations of student efforts will be based upon self-reflections, self-assessment, and personal portfolio construction, as well as in-class performance in negotiating sessions and debriefing discussions.  Pre-requisite: MPA 530

MBA 688 Ethical Management of Organizations

This course will introduce students to the basic concepts of ethics. Students will examine ethical frameworks as they relate to business, the environment, the consumer, and the individual with an organization. Students will also learn to apply these frameworks using moral decision-making techniques to real world case studies. The class will offer students practical tools to help them recognize and address challenging ethical decisions. Pre-requisite: MPA 530



Healthcare managers face problems unique to their industry, from working within the framework of extensive regulation, through ongoing reimbursement and profitability difficulties, to managing a diverse and highly educated workforce. Meeting those challenges effectively requires specialized preparation. The MPA healthcare concentration provides you with critical information you need to optimize both your healthcare organization and your career. If you are already working in healthcare, this concentration will help you understand the big picture of the industry and how the various provider systems interact. If you are new to healthcare, this concentration will give you a necessary orientation to the industry. Either way, you’ll become a more effective manager in healthcare for having taken the time to develop a deeper, more nuanced understanding of the industry and of the unique situations healthcare managers cope with on a daily basis.

Healthcare Administration Courses

MPA 681 US Health Care Policies and Systems

US Health Care Policies and Systems is an Introduction to health care delivery systems, with special emphasis on the American system of health care and its major Issues and challenges. The course explores the dynamics of health care institutions such as hospitals, nursing homes, and ambulatory care facilities that shape the delivery of health care.

MPA 682 Ethical/Legal Issues in Health Care

Ethical/Legal Issues in Health Care is provides the student with the fundamental knowledge of the legal system as it relates to health care Institutions. The course provides an opportunity to integrate this understanding into the moral and ethical realities in the field of health care administration.

MPA 683 Critical Issues in Health Care

This course provides an in-depth examination of some of the critical issues in operations facing the health care providers in today's society. Topics discussed include such issues as the impact of the AIDS crisis on providers and consumers; the prospective pricing system and the DRG's impact on access, quality of care and the operating margins of provider organizations; the role of competition and regulation in containing costs; recruitment and retention of professionals; the for-profit market's impact on the delivery system; the rationing of health care and strategies for intervention.