MPA Executive Track Program Expands to UConn Stamford

36-credit degree program offers new opportunity for Fairfield County professionals in the public and nonprofit sectors

UConn Stamford sign on glass entryway.

UConn Stamford sign on glass entryway. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

The School of Public Policy’s Master of Public Administration (MPA) executive track program will expand to UConn Stamford in Fall 2024, providing a new opportunity for professionals in Fairfield County to advance their careers in the public and nonprofit sectors. 

“Our faculty felt strongly that we need to be part of the career success of public servants in this part of the state,” says Mohamad Alkadry, professor and director of the School of Public Policy. “[It’s] an area that is not being served by any public institution offering an MPA degree.” Alkadry notes it’s also the only Connecticut program accredited by the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA). 

The program, which has operated at UConn Hartford since 2017, will offer a 36-credit degree in a cohort model that meets on Saturdays. Students pursue courses in project management, public finance and budgeting, and economic analysis and can choose a focus area tailored to their interests. Previous tracks have included executive leadership, law and public policy, state and local government management, and urban planning. 

“It’s purposefully in person, so you get that interaction with your professor,” explains Catherine Guarino, director of student and academic affairs in the School of Public Policy. “You’re going to learn from your peers in the classroom.”  

The program is designed to be completed in two years. Guarino says the supportive environment becomes a second family for many students. 

“It’s very interactive,” she says. “There’s something special about being around other people who are working full-time, have families they’re taking care of, and other life responsibilities.” 

Jennifer Orlikoff, dean and chief administrative officer at UConn Stamford, says the cohort model also allows students to build a strong professional network. 

“Adding it to our campus is a logical extension of this important program, given the number of business enterprises, Fortune 500 companies, and nonprofit organizations established in the city and the region,” says Orlikoff. “Students will greatly appreciate and benefit from having the opportunity to pursue this degree in close proximity to where they work.” 

Applications for the MPA executive track program are open for both campuses. Priority will be given to applicants who submit their materials by Feb. 15. The final application deadline is May 15.  

The program expansion will be celebrated during a reception at UConn Stamford on Dec. 7.