Master of Public Administration Graduate Student Handbook

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1 A National Treasure for Over 175 Years Cheyney University of pennsylvania Master of Public Administration Graduate Student Handbook Dr. Gedeon Mudacumura, Program Coordinator Cheyney University Center City (CUCC) 3rd Floor Mellon Building 701 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA Phone: (215) Facsimile: (215) MPA Program Faculty Dr. Bradley Buchner, (610) , Dr. Lynn Green, (610) , Dr. Marilyn Guidry, (610) , Photo courtesy of the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau

2 Pr e fa c e Welcome to Cheyney University s Graduate Program in Public Administration! Cheyney University of Pennsylvania, the nation s oldest African-American higher education institution, offers a 39 credithour Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree program with two degree tracks: a pre-professional Master of Public Administration, and an Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA). This places Cheyney in a unique position to address the need to increase the number of senior-level minorities in public administration. The handbook for MPA Students is designed to answer many of the questions that prospective and current students may have about Cheyney University s MPA program. This handbook provides information on curriculum components, degree requirements, course scheduling, preparation of the academic plan, the comprehensive examinations, satisfaction of the internship requirement and other academic matters. We strongly recommend students consult regularly with the MPA Coordinator regarding requirements and procedures. Once admitted in the program, please do not hesitate to consult with the Coordinator and other faculty members if you have questions or concerns regarding your academic plans or progress. Your concerns and suggestions are extremely important and can influence the way the program evolves. The Coordinator practices the open door policy. Please stop by and share your views negative or positive- about the program. We are glad you made the right choice to study with us! 1

3 Table of Contents Preface 1 About the MPA Program 3 Program Mission 3 Program Description 3 Objectives 3 Program Administration 3 Admission Requirements & Procedures 4 Public Administration Advisory Council (PAAC) 5 The Structure of the MPA Program 5 The MPA Components 5 The Core Curriculum 5 Recommended Sequence of Enrollment 6 Executive Track Option 6 Core Course Scheduling 6 Concentration Component 6 MPA - Degree Requirements and Policies 7 Credits Required 7 The Academic Plan 7 Transfer Students 7 Transfer of Credit 8 Academic Standing & Retention 8 Financial Aid Time Limits 9 Academic Time Limits 9 Incomplete Grades 9 Individualized Instruction & Special Topics 10 Filing for Graduation 10 The Comprehensive Examination 10 Eligibility to Take the Examination 10 Examination Schedule 11 Structure of the Examination 11 Preparing for the Examination 11 Examination Grading 12 Retaking the Examination 12 The Internship Requirement 13 Identifying Internship Opportunities 13 The Internship Contract 13 Internship Log and Internship Paper 13 Public Service Learning Project 13 The Academic Integrity Policy 14 Important MPA Forms 15 2

4 About the MPA Program Program Mission The Cheyney University s MPA degree program seeks to enhance the quality of the public service in Pennsylvania state and local government, the federal civil service and in non-profit organizations world-wide by providing professional education for individuals preparing for, or already in, public service careers. Program Description Recognizing that service to the public is a calling of the highest importance, the program is devoted to developing graduates who are effective, efficient, responsible, and people-centered. The program provides students with enriched opportunities to develop critical thinking and enlightened leadership skills along with a strong general public administration education. Students are given the flexibility to choose electives that will serve their individual interests and career goals. To accomplish this broad mission, the program integrates teaching, community-based research, and service learning activities to prepare public service professionals. The Master of Public Administration program provides current and future administrators with the necessary problemsolving and critical thinking skills that will allow them to create and maintain public and private institutions that can best serve the Philadelphia region, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the nation. Graduates will become competent professionals who are prepared for the challenges of the 21 st Century, sensitized to the needs of diverse international communities and the international workforce and able to communicate among diverse peoples in a global society. Program course work and activities become engaged as lifelong learners in an ever-changing society. Students who graduate from the Cheyney University MPA program will be able to meet the following general learning objectives: Objectives 1. Apply good management practices to the introduction of change and development within an organization; 2. Comprehend the fiscal and other relevant relationships among governmental entities; 3. Articulate and utilize ethical decision-making management procedures; 4. Understand public management within an international perspective; 5. Apply public administration principles to organizations; 6. Comprehend and utilize basic personnel management principles in a diverse workforce environment; 7. Utilize practical applications of theories of organizational behavior to public administration; 8. Write effective managerial documents; 9. Apply the analytical tools used in macro-policy making to micro situations; 10. Present written and oral information in a professional manner; 11. Demonstrate an understanding and utilization of the principles in public administration. Program Administration The Coordinator administers the program with the assistance of the Public Administration faculty and the Social & Behavioral Sciences Department faculty. Although reporting to the Chair of the Department, the Coordinator has primary responsibility for admission and advising of students. The Coordinator consults with the MPA Faculty on a continuing basis regarding program issues. He also works closely with the Chair of the Department and the MPA Steering Committee in reviewing program modifications or in admission or retention actions. 3

5 Admissions Requirements and Procedures Admissions to the MPA program are made on a rolling basis but priority is given to those applicants whose admission package is complete by the following deadlines; Fall semester July 1 st Spring semester November 1 st Summer semester April 1 st Prospective first-year MPA students must fulfill the admission requirements below, and submit application materials to Cheyney University Center City (CUCC): Cheyney University Center City The Mellon Center 701 Market Street, 3rd Floor Philadelphia, PA The MPA program is intended to offer maximum flexibility for a diverse body of students some of whom may have just completed the Bachelor s degree, others of whom may be experienced professionals seeking to enhance their skills. All applicants to the program must have completed a Bachelor s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education with a cumulative grade point average of a 3.0 on a four point scale. The following admission materials are required for all applicants to the program: 1. A completed graduate application. 2. A complete personal statement of a maximum of 500 words. This personal statement should include the applicant s career goals, educational objectives, interests and reason for requesting admission in the MPA program. 3. Official transcripts from any and all previous institutions of higher education where the applicant was enrolled. 4. Two letters of recommendation attesting to the applicant s academic and professional work. 5. Successful completion of a personal interview (only for applicants with a cumulative grade point average slightly below a 3.0 on a four point scale). 6. The application fee. 7. Individuals seeking enrollment in the Executive Track also need to submit a portfolio detailing their professional experience as a public manager. Admission to the MPA program is based on multiple criteria. The MPA Steering Committee evaluates the whole student application package (GPA, personal statement, and letters of recommendation, etc.) in making a decision for admission before making recommendation to the Graduate Admissions Office. Readmission Requests A student who withdraws from the University after an absence of more than two (2) consecutive semesters may re-apply to Cheyney University MPA program for readmission. To apply for readmission the student must submit: 1. Cheyney University Readmit Form. 2. Letter explaining the reason for seeking readmission to the MPA program. This letter must outline specific steps the applicant will implement to ensure successful completion of the degree. Acceptance for readmission is determined on a case-by-case basis. 4

6 Transfer Applicants Graduate transfer applicants follow the same procedure as First-Year Students. Transfer applicants should be aware that a maximum of six (6) graduate credits are allowed for transfer. Application Review Process Once all required application documentation has been received, credentials will be reviewed by the MPA Steering Committee. Applicants will be notified of the admission decision in writing following the review. Upon admission, registration may be scheduled for the next term according to the published dates for new students. Prospective students should apply early. Completion of the application process may require two to six weeks. Acceptance for Admission Full Acceptance Applicants whose admission credentials meet or exceed all MPA program admission requirements earn full graduate acceptance status. Such a status entitles students to take classes in the program and to register for classes after checking with their academic advisor. All students must attain full graduate status in order to graduate. Full time students may carry nine or 12 credits. Part-time students carry three to six credits per semester. Conditional Status Students with a cumulative GPA slightly below 3.0 are granted conditional admission upon the recommendation of the MPA Steering Committee. Such applicants must successfully complete a personal interview. In addition, conditional students must register for XPA 500 as 3 of the six credits such students must take. They must be advised before registration and their status is reviewed after one semester or six hours of coursework. All conditionally admitted students must earn a B in each course they take their first semester. Failure to do so dismisses the student from the University. Public Administration Advisory Council (PAAC) An Advisory Council facilitates the MPA program s relations with the practitioner community in the Greater Philadelphia region. Council members have important managerial or policy-making roles in local and state government as well as in non-profit organizations. The Council advises the MPA Coordinator and faculty on curriculum, employment trends, student recruitment, and continuing education and training needs. Second year students are often invited to participate in PAAC meetings and activities. The Structure of the MPA Program The MPA Components The MPA degree program consists of the required core courses (24 credits); concentration courses (9 credits); a public service project (3 credits); an internship (3 credits) and the comprehensive examination (Sections 1 and 2). The Core Curriculum The core curriculum is designed to provide students with a common body of knowledge and skills critical to the work of public managers. This curriculum corresponds to the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA) standards, the practices of other MPA programs and the educational needs of public service professionals. The core consists of eight courses listed below (24 credits). XPA 501 Introduction to Public Management (3 credits) XPA 502 Organization Theory & Behavior (3 credits) XPA 503 Intergovernmental Relations (3 credits) XPA 504 Public Policy Analysis (3 credits) XPA 505 Public Budgeting & Finance (3 credits) XPA 506 Public Personnel Management (3 credits) XPA 507 Geographic Information Systems for Managers (3 credits) XPA 508 Quantitative Decision-Making for Public Managers (3 credits) 5

7 Recommended Sequence of Enrollment First Semester Course Schedule XPA 501 Introduction to Public Management (3) XPA 502 Organizational Theory and Behavior (3) XPA 503 Intergovernmental Relations (3) Second Semester Course Schedule XPA 505 Public Budgeting & Finance (3) XPA 506 Public Personnel Management (3) XPA 508 Quantitative Decision-Making for Public Managers (3) Comprehensive exam (Section 1) Third Semester Course Schedule XPA 507 Geographic Information Systems for Managers (3) XPA 504 Public Policy Analysis (3) XPA Internship I (3) Elective (3) Fourth Semester Course Schedule XPA 610 Public Service Learning (3) Electives (3-9) Comprehensive exam (Section 2) Students must take XPA 501 as early in the program as possible. The order in which core courses are taken may be affected by their availability. Conditionally admitted students need to complete XPA 500 during their first semester of enrollment. Students generally complete most of the core coursework before taking concentration work, but this may be modified by the scheduling of concentration courses of particular interest to a student. Executive Track Option The program also offers an Executive Track for students who are already working in public administration. At the time of application/admission, the MPA Committee determines which applicant will enroll in the Executive Track. Only applicants with at least five years of management/supervisory position are considered for this track. Individuals interested in entering the Executive Track must submit a portfolio documenting their professional experience with their application. Such admitted applicants receive three credits for work experience as a substitute for an internship. Core Course Scheduling Each of the core courses is normally offered once during an academic year. Concentration Component Cheyney s MPA program offers three areas of concentration: Administration of Justice Non-Profit Administration State and Local Government Administration A concentration consists of a minimum of nine credit hours of coursework. Students choose from the following electives: Administration of Justice Electives XPA 510 Writing for Law Enforcement (3) XPA 511 The Criminal Justice Process (3) XPA 512 Law Enforcement Management (3) XPA 513 Administrative Law (3) XPA 514 Court Administration and Management (3) Non-profit Administration Electives XPA 520 Seminar on Community Development (3) XPA 521 Seminar in Group and Organizational Dynamics (3) XPA 523 Minority and Women Administrators (3) XPA 524 Managing Non-Profit Human Resources (3) XPA 525 Non-Profit Finances and Budgeting (3) XPA 526 Fundraising and Marketing for Non-Profit Organizations (3) State and Local Government Administration Electives XPA 530 Politics of State and Local Government (3) XPA 531 Ethnic Groups and Diversity (3) XPA 533 Government Project Management (3) XPA 534 Emergency Management (3) XPA 541 U. S. Health Policy (3) XPA Internship (3) All pre-professional students must complete a supervised internship. Students in the Executive Track are not required to take XPA 600 but must register for the course. 6

8 XPA Public Service Learning Project (3 credits) The public service learning project is required for each student enrolled in the program. The objective of this exercise is to engage the student in a service project of their own selection which utilizes the skills and knowledge they have accumulated during their coursework in the MPA program. The public service project is a semester-long project with the intention of bridging theory of public administration and an applied project. Students will receive guidance and supervision from the MPA Program Coordinator. See graduate catalog for a description of other courses MPA Degree Requirements and Policies Credits Required A minimum of 39 semester hours of graduate course work must be completed to earn the MPA degree. As discussed above, 24 credits are taken in prescribed core coursework. The remaining coursework consists of a maximum of nine credits in a concentration, three credits of internship and three credits of a public service project. The Academic Plan Every MPA student must file an Academic Plan with the MPA Coordinator s office before the completion of 12 credit hours of graduate work. A sample copy of the academic plan form is found in Appendix A. Students failing to submit an academic plan will be denied registration in subsequent semesters pending filing of an approved academic plan. In preparing an academic plan, students should meet with the Coordinator for careful evaluation of their professional and personal objectives as well as degree and departmental requirements. It is also an appropriate time to plan a concentration. The Academic Plan, which must be approved by the coordinator, outlines the courses a student has taken and intends to take in the program. Pre-professional students are required to take XPA 600, Internship I, unless they have applied for and have been granted a waiver of this requirement in writing. Waivers are considered only for those who are currently or have previously held suitable professional level employment in a public or non-profit service organization. The Academic Plan form can be obtained from the MPA Coordinator. Transfer Students When preparing the academic plan, transfer students must indicate: The name of the institution where the course was taken. The semester in which the course was taken (or will be taken). For instance: a course taken in Fall 2010 would read F The course number and course title. Total number of course credits - core courses are listed under the Universal Core, while elective courses are listed under each Track. Students should provide the Coordinator with a copy of the academic plan form that bears an original signature. An academic plan may need to be changed as a student s goals shift, or in response to a change in course scheduling. This is especially true with concentration courses, which may be offered less frequently. Fortunately, an academic plan is easily amended. To amend a plan, a student should inform the Coordinator of the courses to be added or deleted. The Coordinator will then process the appropriate form to amend the student s plan. In certifying a student for graduation, the Registrar s Office compares a student s academic plan with the courses on the student s transcript. 7

9 Transfer of Credit Students who have completed some graduate work at another university may transfer a maximum of six graduate credit hours to Cheyney University. A student wishing to receive transfer credit after beginning degree work at Cheyney University must submit the official transcript, syllabus, reading lists and other relevant course materials which allow the MPA Steering Committee to evaluate the coursework. Transfer credit can only be granted for courses in which a grade of B or better was earned. Once approved, the MPA Coordinator will send the official transcript with the course and grade indicated to the Cheyney University Registrar Office. Academic Standing and Retention Good Academic Standing MPA students must meet the following minimum academic requirements for continuing enrollment in the MPA program each semester: 1. Earn no final class grades lower than a C 2. Earn no more than two final class grades of a C 3. Maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of a 3.0 or higher A third grade of a C or lower earned in any course must be repeated the next time the course is offered. Any courses in which a grade below a B is earned may be repeated only one time and a total of two class repeats across the program will be allowed. When a course is repeated, both grades will appear on the transcript, but only the most recent grade will be used in calculating the student s GPA. Academic Warning If the student does not have Good Academic Standing at the completion of any semester of study, they will receive an Academic Warning for the following semester. A student is only allowed one semester of Academic Warning. Upon being made aware of being on Academic Warning, the student must meet with their faculty advisor to revise the academic plan to remediate the problem. Failure to revise such a plan will jeopardize continuance in the MPA program. If the student successfully returns to Good Academic Standing after the semester of Academic Warning and the student again does not meet the Good Academic Standing standards, the student will be placed on Academic Probation. Academic Probation If after a semester of Academic Warning the student still is not in good academic standing or if the student again does not meet Good Academic Standing standards the student will be considered to be on Academic Probation. Upon being made aware of being on Academic Probation the student must meet with their faculty advisor to review the academic plan to remediate the problem. Students will only be allowed one semester of Academic Probation. Academic Dismissal Should the student be unable to return to good academic standing at the completion of their semester of Academic Probation the student will be dismissed from the University. A student dismissed from the University following a semester of Academic Probation may seek readmission only under unusual circumstances. In special situations the student may file an appeal to the Appeals Committee. Students considering filing an appeal should first meet with their faculty advisor to determine whether the filing of an appeal would be appropriate. If so, the students faculty advisor will guide the student through the appeal process. 8

10 Financial Aid Time Limits Federal regulations require that all institutions of higher education establish, publish and apply reasonable standards for determining whether a student, who is otherwise eligible for financial aid is maintaining satisfactory academic progress. For the purpose of satisfactory academic progress, financial aid includes all federal, state and Cheyney University funded scholarships, grants, discounts, work and loans. There are three standards of satisfactory academic progress that MPA students must meet: qualitative, quantitative, and completion time standard. Qualitative Standards To meet the qualitative standards, MPA students must achieve and maintain a minimum GPA of a 3.0. Quantitative Standards To meet the quantitative standards, MPA students must successfully complete 75% of all courses attempted. Completion Time Standard Under normal circumstances, a full time or accelerated MPA student should complete their program within 3 years. Therefore, no full-time or accelerated MPA student would be eligible for financial assistance for more than three years. MPA students enrolling half-time should normally complete the program within six years. Therefore, no half-time MPA degree candidate will be eligible for financial assistance for more than six years. Academic Time Limits MPA students must complete the program of study within six calendar years from the date of acceptance into a program of graduate studies. Students admitted into the MPA program are expected to enroll continuously until the program is completed. Continuous enrollment is defined as completing a minimum of six credits per academic year, including Summer Sessions. Failure to maintain continuous enrollment may affect progress toward degree completion because of course availability. The timeline of six years for degree completion will not be extended for students who fail to maintain continuous enrollment in courses as defined by the MPA program. Under some circumstances, a student may be granted more time to complete the degree. A student must inform the Coordinator in writing of the need for an extension and the justification for it. If an extension seems warranted, the Coordinator will request that Cheyney University Graduate Council grant it. While such an extension is not automatic, it will normally be approved if the student requests it prior to the expiration of the original six-year period. It is more difficult, however, to obtain approval for an extension once the six-year deadline has passed. Students who anticipate a problem with meeting the deadline should discuss the situation with the Coordinator as early as possible. Incomplete Grades An incomplete grade is assigned only after a student has consulted with his or her instructor prior to the end of the term in which the grade is to be assigned, has made arrangements to complete course requirements at the earliest possible opportunity, and the instructor has expressly agreed to grant this grade. Generally, an Incomplete grade is appropriate only when the uncompleted coursework is limited to the final examination and/or a final paper. It will not be granted if a student has failed to attend regularly scheduled class meetings during the term. Finishing incomplete coursework in a timely fashion is the responsibility of the student. Normally, the student has one semester from the end of the term in which the I was granted to complete required coursework. But an instructor can specify any deadline for completion of incomplete work that he or she deems to be reasonable. If the work has not been completed, and the instructor has not reported a regular course grade by the end of one semester, the grade of I is automatically changed to a F. An additional extension may be granted if the student has requested such an extension from his instructor prior to the end of the one semester period. The instructor must then request such an extension in writing. An extension is typically one semester long. Such an extension is not automatic. The instructor has sole discretion in granting it. 9

11 Individualized Instruction and Special Topics Students may occasionally wish to register for XPA 620, Independent Study. Registration in XPA 620 permits a student to explore an area not treated in regularly scheduled courses. Periodically, faculty may have a special area they would like to teach in that is not covered in other courses. XPA 625 Special Topics provides them to offer such a course which may be a precursor to a new elective course, or just a special interest area. Registration for Individualized Instruction requires the completion of an Individualized Instruction Form, available from the MPA Coordinator Office. Filing for Graduation MPA students are expected to submit the Anticipation of Graduation for Graduate Students form on time. Forms received after deadline dates will not be considered for the filing graduation date. In order to have the Anticipation of Graduation for Graduate Students form submitted to the Office of the Registrar on time, MPA students must submit the form to their academic advisor no later than the end of the second week of instruction in the semester in which they expect to complete all degree requirements. Therefore, candidates planning to graduate in May must file their application for graduation in January. The Comprehensive Examination The purpose of the comprehensive exam is to ensure that all students graduating from the program have mastered the core competencies necessary for public service. All students pursuing the Master of Public Administration degree must pass a comprehensive examination. Along with the internship required of pre-service students, this examination is a capstone component of the program. The examination requires a student to integrate and demonstrate a mastery of material from the following courses: XPA 501 Introduction to Public Management XPA 502 Organizational Theory & Behavior XPA 503 Intergovernmental Relations XPA 504 Public Policy Analysis XPA 505 Public Budgeting & Finance XPA 506 Public Personnel Management XPA 507 Geographic Information Systems for Managers XPA 508 Quantitative Decision-Making for Public Managers In the examination, students are expected to demonstrate a grasp of important substantive and analytic concepts, familiarity with major works in the field, and an ability to integrate and apply important ideas and concepts. Performance standards for the MPA comprehensive examination reflect this expectation. The comprehensive examination is divided into two sections. Section I is a preliminary written exam each student will complete prior to the end of the first year in the program. Section II is a more formal exam and is scheduled during the student s second year. Eligibility to Take the Examination Students are eligible to take Section I of the examination after completing the first semester with a GPA of 3.0 or higher. Students are encouraged to take Section II of the examination after finishing the eight core courses XPA 501 through XPA 508. Waiting until all coursework is complete is unnecessary since the exam is based only on the core courses. Some students may have to retake the examination and taking it early avoids delaying the date of graduation. Except in special circumstances approved by the Coordinator, students many not register to take the examination if they have any Incomplete grades on their record or if their grade point average is below 3.0. Students who fail part or all of the examination may retake those parts that they failed. (See Retaking the Examination) 10

12 Examination Schedule Section I is a preparatory stage of the COMPS and is scheduled on the second Thursday in December and April of each semester. Section I provides students a preview of comprehensive questions and an opportunity for faculty to provide feedback to students on writing skills. Section II of the comprehensive examination is a five-hour written test. It is regularly scheduled on the third Tuesday morning in November and the final Tuesday in March of each academic year. In exceptional cases, it may be administered in June to accommodate a compelling student need. Structure of the Examination Section I of the COMPS is designed to accustom students to prepare for a long written assessment. This section of the exam is introduced since many graduate students are not required to complete examinations but submit research papers for coursework. Students will receive feedback on their level of preparation and recommendations for areas requiring further study. Like section I, the questions for section II are drawn from the core courses. They require students to bridge theory and practice as they address pragmatic scenarios. Concretely, students have the opportunity to analyze real life management problem(s) encountered in a public and non-profit service organizations and come up with concrete strategies to resolve them. Students have to answer a maximum of four questions two from the core courses and two from area of concentration. Typically, questions relate to Inter-governmental relations, public management, public personnel management, public budgeting and finance, organizational theory and administrative behavior, and public policy analysis. Students will be graded through a blind review process by a panel of three readers of MPA faculty. Preparing for the Examination Students are encouraged to prepare and bring a bibliography of relevant public administration literature to the exam. The content of courses taught by the same instructor often changes over time. Required readings in the current academic year will, in all likelihood, be somewhat different from those used in earlier years. Hence, students preparing for their examination should secure and review syllabi for the most recent offerings of various core courses and for offerings of any core course that might be taught by different instructors. This is especially true for students moving through the program more slowly. Syllabi are available from the Department s secretary. The other reason that required core course readings alone may be insufficient is that comprehensive exam questions are often, by design, different in character than the typical question on a final examination. One of the purposes of the comprehensive examination is to assess the ability of students to apply knowledge to more concrete situations as well as to bring to bear additional materials. Thus, good answers often require in-depth review of materials that go beyond what was assigned in a particular course. While it is impossible to specify infallible guidelines, student experience suggests the following advice in preparing to take the exam. Waiting to take the examination until the end of one s coursework is generally unwise since the examination focuses on the core coursework, which is usually taken early in the program. The more time that elapses between the completion of this coursework and sitting for the examination, the more difficult it seems to be for students to do well. The amount of time necessary to prepare for the exam will vary. Students who have consistently read required readings for their courses will need less time to prepare than others. Students who do well in the exam typically prepare by outlining answers to the study questions. If some time has elapsed since completion of the core courses, the amount of preparation time will increase. As noted, students may prepare and use for reference a bibliography of relevant, scholarly materials. Entries on the bibliography are limited to the author s name, the title of the book or article, and publication material, if desired. Students are strongly encouraged to prepare such a bibliography. Aside from its benefit in jogging one s memory during the exam, the effort required in preparing it may highlight major gaps in a student s knowledge. Students who choose to prepare a bibliography must submit a copy of it with their examination answers. 11

13 Students planning to take the exam should consult with the Coordinator early in the term prior to taking the exam. The Coordinator can provide insight into how to prepare for the exam and inform the student of any plans for group meetings with those registered for the examination. He can also suggest which faculty members to consult on materials relevant to particular study questions. Finally, MPA students should appreciate that the comprehensive examination has always been an important part of the structure of the Cheyney University s Graduate Program in Public Administration. Successful completion of the examination reflects a mature knowledge of the role of a public administrator. Coursework is integrated through serious preparation for the exam in a way not always possible in other programs where the degree is little more than a series of disparate courses. Examination Grading Each question a student chooses to answer is graded anonymously by members of the public administration faculty. The answer can be awarded Pass or Fail. To pass a question, at least two graders must award the answer a Pass. It normally takes two weeks for the exams to be graded. The Chair of the Department notifies each student of the results of their exam. Students failing all or part of the exam are especially urged to do this as part of their preparation for retaking the exam. They should also schedule an appointment with the Coordinator to discuss their performance and their plans for retaking the examination. Retaking the Examination While most students pass the comprehensive exam the first time, a small percentage does not. Students failing all or part of the examination are automatically entitled to retake it once. A student who has passed one part of the examination and retakes the exam the very next time it is scheduled need only retake the failed question(s). If the retake is delayed, however, the entire examination must be retaken. A student who fails the examination for a second time may be dismissed from the program. The Internship Requirement - XPA 600 Pre-professional students must complete a structured, supervised internship. The purpose of the internship is to offer students an opportunity to both observe and participate in the process of program management or policy analysis. It complements the knowledge and skills acquired through coursework. Three hours of credit are awarded for the internship under XPA 600. This course will be listed in the core course column on the Academic Plan. The internship is satisfied when a student completes a minimum of 300 hours, either working as an intern full time or for a minimum of 20 hours per week. Students must earn a minimum of 21 credits before an internship. The Coordinator may waive this requirement if a very attractive, or especially relevant opportunity arises, or if taking the internship prior to the completion of twenty-one hours will expedite completion of a student s degree. Some examples of internships are the Pennsylvania Management Associate Program; the Mayor s Internship Program in Philadelphia, and Public/Private Ventures Internship program. The following is a recommended checklist for the internship requirement: Item Identify possible areas of public service that interest you. Identify specific opportunities, discuss with MPA Coordinator. Assemble application packet and apply for internships. Receive confirmation of internship Complete internship contract with MPA Coordinator. Register for internship Begin internship When 6 months prior 5 months prior 4-3 months prior 2-1 months prior 1 month prior 1 month to 2 weeks prior Scheduled Date of Internship 12

14 Identifying Internship Opportunities The location of Cheyney University s MPA program in the midst of a major metropolitan area provides MPA students with a diversity of internship opportunities. However, finding the paid internship for each student is sometimes a challenge. For this reason, students who need to complete an internship should consult with the Coordinator well in advance of the semester they plan to fulfill this requirement. In this way, students will have a greater choice in selecting an internship. The Coordinator can also aid the student in preparing a resume, in developing interviewing skills and in securing an internship. The MPA program regularly receives and posts on the program s bulletin board information on internship opportunities in the Philadelphia region. The final responsibility for securing an internship rests with the student. It is his/her responsibility to prepare a resume and make it available to the MPA Coordinator and potential internship sponsors, to arrange interviews with agencies offering internships and to negotiate the specific terms of the internship, including hours, duties and remuneration. In general, paid internships are preferable. However, remuneration alone should not cause a student to either reject or select an internship. An internship should be chosen (or rejected) based on the quality of experience it offers and the extent to which it advances the professional goals of the student. The Internship Contract After securing an internship, but before registering for XPA 600 and beginning the internship, the Internship Contract must be completed. This form spells out the nature of the position, the proposed duties or responsibilities, and collateral reading and written assignments. The student, the MPA Coordinator and the intern s workplace supervisor must sign this form, which clarifies performance expectations and provides the Coordinator with some authority should an intern report that assigned duties are far different from those spelled out in the contract. The Internship Log During the course of an internship, each student must maintain and make available to the Internship Advisor copies of an internship daily log. Students should also be prepared to talk by telephone or meet periodically with the Internship Advisor to discuss internship-related problems, issues and experiences. Students are required to work at a placement site for no less than 20 hours a week, during a regular semester and no less than 40 hours per week during the summer session. Students will receive three credit hours for the practical experience and upon the completion of the internship paper. Public Service Learning Project - XPA 610 Students will perform a service-learning project with a governmental agency or non-profit. This project can be performed in conjunction with an internship. The project must be substantial in nature and integrate to the program s course material. All projects must be approved by the MPA Coordinator. At the conclusion of the project, the student will submit a project portfolio and will give a one hour project briefing. The student gives the project briefing to the agency supervisor, MPA Coordinator, and one other MPA faculty. All project briefings are open to all students and faculty in the program. The project is evaluated by the agency supervisor, MPA Coordinator, and another MPA faculty. All evaluations are averaged together to give a single percent grade. Student must score 85 percent or better to pass. Students who fail the service learning project are permitted to do another project and provide a briefing until they pass. The public service project can be completed anytime after the student has completed the core courses. 13

15 Academic Integrity Policy Cheyney University expects from its students the highest standards of honor and integrity in meeting their academic responsibilities. Academic honesty is essential for effective evaluation of student scholarship and growth. Anything less than complete integrity undermines the basic educational process. Any acts of academic dishonesty by students, such as plagiarism on written papers or cheating on exams, threaten to undermine the educational and ethical goals of the University for its students. Such violations are of the utmost seriousness. Academic dishonesty in any form is regarded as a breach of honor and integrity, an evasion of personal responsibility, and an attempt to misrepresent progress. Violations of standards will not be tolerated at Cheyney University. The goal of the University s Academic Honesty policy and procedures is to promote a climate of academic honesty for all individuals at the University. It is the responsibility of students to be aware of the Academic Honesty policy and abide by it at all times. Ignorance of the policy will not be an acceptable defense if charges are lodged. Students accused of academic dishonesty who fail to meet the time deadlines contained in the procedures set forth in the policy will forfeit their rights to a formal hearing and to appeal a sanction. Students are encouraged to bring cases of academic dishonesty that they observe or know about to the attention of their instructors or to officials of the University. For the full policy, see the Cheyney University Student Handbook which can be found on the University web page at This policy in its entirety can also be found in the Cheyney University Policy Register at wsy/policy-register/index.cfm. 14

16 Form Index The following forms are attached in the next set of pages: A. Academic Plan Form B. Readmit Form C. Individualized Instruction Form D. Graduate Checklist Form E. Graduate Anticipation Form 15

17 CHEYNEY UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA MASTER OF PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION Academic Plan Student Name: XPA Introduction to Public Management XPA Organizational Theory & Behavior XPA Intergovernmental Relations XPA Public Policy Analysis XPA Public Budgeting & Finance XPA Public Personnel Management XPA GIS for Managers XPA Quantitative Decision Making for Managers XPA Internship I XPA Public Service Learning Administration of Justice Track Core Courses XPA Eff. Profession Comm. Skills XPA Writing for Law Enforcement XPA The Criminal Justice Process XPA Law Enforcement Management XPA Administrative Law XPA Court Administration and Management Non Profit Administration Track XPA Eff. Profession Comm. Skills XPA Seminar on Community Development XPA Seminar in Group and Organizational Dynamics XPA Minority and Women Administrators XPA Managing Non-profit Human Resources XPA Non-Profit Finances and Budgeting XPA Fundraising and Marketing for Non-Profit Organizations State and Local Government Track XPA Eff. Profession Comm. Skills XPA Politics of State and Local Government XPA Ethnic Groups and Diversity XPA Government Project Management XPA Emergency Management XPA U. S. Health Policy MPA Comprehensive - Section I Schedule Remarks MPA Comprehensive - Section II Student Signature: MPA Coordinator Signature: Date: Date:

18

19 Name: Office of Admission CHEYNEY UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA 1837 University Circle Cheyney, Pennsylvania (610) CHEYNEY UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA READMIT FORM (First, Middle Initial, Last) Address: City: State: Zip: Phone: ( ) PA Resident: ( ) YES ( ) NO SS#: Date of Birth: Are you a Veteran? ( ) YES ( ) NO If yes, term of active duty from: to Please submit a photocopy of service record Name of Major: If readmitted to Cheyney University I will enter: ( ) Full time ( ) Part time ( ) Off-campus ( ) Resident Hall Are you currently on Academic Suspension? ( ) YES ( ) NO Last Semester You Attended at Cheyney University: (Semester/Year) Semester Requested for Readmission: ( ) FALL ( ) SPRING ( ) SUMMER Have you been readmitted to the University previously? ( ) YES ( ) NO If yes, how many times? Signature: Date: Please submit along with this form a letter addressed to the Director of Admissions requesting to be readmitted to the University.

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