Program Characteristics

Fall 2019


The UNM MPA program is more selective in its admissions than the average of NASPAA accredited programs that reported data for the 2017-2018 academic year (which includes the education performance of 219 accredited programs and ten programs seeking accreditation) and more successful in attracting admitted applicants to enroll in our program:


Admission & Enrollment 

As a result of efforts to increase graduation of students over the past three years, the MPA program achieved record enrollment and produced a record number of graduates:

Chart 1

We enroll a highly diverse student body. Data shown in the charts below are typical for the student body as a whole. Female students make up two-thirds to three-quarters of our enrollment. The age range is broad, but the average age has been decreasing in recent years as more students enter the program directly after completing a bachelor’s degree.

Chart 2

Time to Degree

Students taking on an average of 12 to 15 credit hours per year will finish the program in three to three-and-a-half years. An examination of student records reveals this pattern to be true for those who successfully complete the program in that period. Students will take 12 to 15 credit hours per year, often in three semesters.

Those who do not finish within the three- to four-year period, typically consist of students whose work/family life require them to proceed at a slower pace at 9 to 12 credit hours per year.
Most of these students finish within a four to five-year period.


Our faculty size is typical of NASPAA-accredited programs:

Faculty Presence

Learning Outcome Assessment

Each Spring, we measure students’ achievement of specific learning outcomes in our core courses, to see how effective we are in achieving the competencies expected for program graduates.  This assessment information is evaluated by the faculty and used to improve the design and delivery of the curriculum. These are the results of the learning outcome assessments conducted in Spring, 2017:


Student Satisfaction

Every graduate is asked to rate their satisfaction with the program at the time of their graduation. The information is used by the faculty to identify areas of both excellence and concern, and inform curricular improvements.  These are results from the past three years:

Student Satisfaction

Student Employment

Most graduates worked full time while they studied:



Employment commitments for UNM MPA students may contribute to the relatively slower rate of progress for students compared to the national average:

Graduation Rate


The School is encouraging faster degree completion by offering more assistance and options for completing the capstone requirements, and by ensuring that the courses needed for degree completion are available at optimal times and locations for working adults.

UNM MPA graduates continued their employment, or found new employment at the time of graduation, in the following fields:

Job Placement