Learn how to serve your community more effectively through work in the public sector with our 9-credit, 15-week graduate certificate program in Public Administration.

This graduate certificate program will challenge you to develop greater competencies in administration, human relations, and management while applying principles of ethical and virtuous leadership.

Take the First Step

Get in touch with any questions or submit a simple application for admission.
We will assist you every step of the way toward acceptance so you can enroll and begin your classes!

At a Glance

7.11 Million
Number of people who work in public administration in the United States

Program Length

9 credits/3 courses/15 weeks


  • Online

Scholarship & Aid

In keeping with our commitment to supporting working adults seeking further education, we offer each eligible candidate up to $3,000 in scholarships.

Is This the Degree For Me?

Who It’s For

  • People working in the public sector interested in developing more effective leadership skills
  • Nonprofit professionals who want to improve their ability to influence and partner with government organizations
  • Professionals who want to take a step toward earning an MBA or MS in Business with a Public Administration specialization

Career Paths

  • Governmental Department Manager
  • Nonprofit Director
  • City Manager
  • Government Agency Director
  • Chief of Staff
  • Program Director
  • Budget Analyst
  • Campaign Manager

What You’ll Learn

  • How to deal with unique leadership, logistical, and organizational challenges encountered by leaders in the public sector.
  • Best practices for organizing, managing, and financing public sector organizations.
  • Budgeting and financing in the public sector.
  • Procurement processes and contract administration in public agencies.
  • Effective strategies for achieving elected positions in local, state, and federal government.
  • Essential competencies for public sector leadership.

Elevate Your Skillset

Once you’ve completed your certificate in public administration, you can then stack your earned credits into an online master’s degree in business administration (MBA) or apply them toward a Master of Organizational Leadership (MOL) or Project Management (MPM).

Program Details

Program Information

Please visit our catalog for admission requirements and a full list of our courses.

Your first step is to get in touch with any questions or submit the simple application for admission. We will assist you every step of the way toward acceptance so you can enroll and begin your classes!

If you are serving or have served our country, we sincerely thank you. Our military services office is here to work closely with active duty, retired, reserve, and eligible family members qualified for military benefits. Learn how we can help you with the application process and review the benefits you have earned.

For a full list of fees, visit our Tuition and Fees page.

The University of Mary is committed to putting your educational goals within reach. Learn what scholarships you qualify for.

We welcome students from various backgrounds, including transfer students from regionally accredited colleges and universities and those with military or career and work experience. 

How do I show my previous college, military, or work experience?

  • Official transcripts (if applicable) from a regionally accredited institution with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.75 should be submitted directly to the Office of Admissions.

    • Did you graduate from the University of Mary? Then we’ll get your Mary transcript for you!
    • At most other schools, you can request transcripts by going to the National Student Clearinghouse or by contacting the registrar’s office. 
      • Have your transcripts sent to:
        Office of Admissions
        University of Mary
        7500 University Drive
        Bismarck, ND 58504
      • Or request to send electronic transcripts to registrar@umary.edu.
  • Students with previous career or work experience can earn credits for prior learning.
    • You can choose to test for prior learning credits — we convert your test scores into college credit.
    • You can request a portfolio review for prior learning credits. You’ll assemble documentation to show your experience, which will be reviewed and evaluated by an experienced faculty member.
  • Military experience can count towards a degree.
  • All of our programs require you to fill out the general application form in addition to submitting the application fee and your transcripts.
  • Any program-specific requirements you’ll need to submit in addition to the items listed above can be found in our catalog.

At the University of Mary, we review every application on an individual basis, ensuring that the materials you submit are evaluated with care and attention. Reach out to us if you have any questions in filling out your application.

Get Started Today

Apply Online