The Master of Public Administration program at West Virginia University recently received a seven-year reaccreditation from the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs and Administration.

It remains the only accredited public administration program in West Virginia.

“We pride ourselves in having a rigorous curriculum that introduces students to both the tools and theory of public administration,” said L. Christopher Plein, Eberly Family Professor for Outstanding Public Service and interim director of the master’s degree program in public administration.

“That was clearly recognized in the accreditation review process, because our curriculum is seen as particularly strong in providing both theoretical foundation and practical skills.”

The network is the gold standard in public service education, administrators said.

To receive accreditation, programs must complete a self-study report that demonstrates a strong educational mission to prepare students for a career in public services.

“We’re so proud of the continued hard work of the faculty in the Department of Public Administration,” said Maryanne Reed, interim dean of the Eberly College of Arts and Science.

“The Department is a thriving example of a successful culture of learning and collaboration that is committed to providing students with a high-quality education.”

A self-study report includes an extensive review of program curriculum, a survey of alumni and the documentation and data for all program operations.

After the self-study has been approved, the network sends a site visit team of professors and public administration professionals to campus. A team visited WVU in March, where members met with faculty, students, alumni, and University officials to verify program operations.

“Their insights have guided our broader goals for curriculum and program development moving forward,” said Maja Holmes, associate professor of public administration.

The WVU Master of Public Administration program has been accredited since standards were first adopted in the late 1970s.

The Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration is a membership organization of graduate programs in public policy, public affairs, public administration, and public & nonprofit management. The organization has nearly 300 member schools located across the U.S. and in 14 other countries around the globe.



CONTACT: Devon Copeland, Director of Marketing and Communication, Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, West Virginia University, 304-293-6867,

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