Masters in Public Administration Programs in the State of Nebraska

Cole Neder

Cole Neder

Updated & Fact Checked: 05.15.2024


Living in Nebraska while obtaining an MPA degree offers several positives for both entry-level and mid-career students. Nebraska boasts a lower cost of living compared to many other states, making it an affordable option for students. This is particularly beneficial for entry-level students who may be managing student loans or other financial obligations. Additionally, Nebraska is known for its friendly communities and welcoming atmosphere, providing a comfortable and supportive environment for students to live and study.

In terms of recreational and fun activities, Nebraska offers a variety of options for outdoor enthusiasts. The state is home to several beautiful parks and nature reserves, perfect for hiking, camping, and wildlife viewing. Additionally, Nebraska has a rich cultural heritage, with attractions such as the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium in Omaha, which is consistently ranked as one of the best zoos in the world. Students can also explore unique landmarks like Chimney Rock and Scotts Bluff National Monument, which offer stunning views and a glimpse into Nebraska’s history.

In Omaha, students can enjoy a vibrant arts and culture scene, with numerous galleries, theaters, and music venues to explore. The city also boasts a diverse culinary scene, with a range of restaurants offering everything from traditional Midwestern fare to international cuisine. In Wayne, students can experience small-town charm and community events, such as the annual Wayne Chicken Show, which celebrates the city’s poultry heritage with parades, contests, and live music.

MPA Programs in Nebraska

Overall, living in Nebraska while obtaining an MPA degree provides students with a welcoming community, affordable living, and a variety of recreational and cultural opportunities, making it an attractive option for both entry-level and mid-career students alike.

NASPAA-accredited MPA Programs

Overall, NASPAA accreditation is highly beneficial to MPA students, as it enhances the value and recognition of their degree, providing them with a strong foundation for successful careers in public administration. The State of Nebraska has one institution with NASPAA accreditation for their MPA program:

University of Nebraska at Omaha

  • Omaha, NE
  • Online + Campus

Accreditation: NASPAA, NCACSHLC

Modality: Online/On-Campus

Credit Hours: 39

GRE: Not required

Resident Tuition: $388 (PCH)

Non-Resident Tuition: $820 (PCH)

Program Overview:
The UNO Master of Public Administration program is highly ranked, placing in the top 15% in the U.S. according to U.S. News and World Report. The faculty, recognized as national and international scholars, includes 33% who are fellows in the prestigious National Academy of Public Administration. Students benefit from a community of scholars and practitioners dedicated to effective teaching and research. The MPA program, one of the first accredited in the U.S., offers degrees in Omaha and online, providing an environment that fosters personal and skill development for students pursuing careers in public administration.

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Online MPA Programs

When considering an online MPA program, there are several positives to look out for. One of the key benefits is flexibility, as students can access course materials and lectures at any time and from anywhere with an internet connection. This flexibility is especially valuable for working professionals or those with family responsibilities, as it allows them to pursue their degree without having to disrupt their existing commitments. An overview of the state’s non-accredited online MPA program can be found here:

Wayne State College

  • Wayne, NE
  • Online

Accreditation: NCACSHLC

Modality: Online

Credit Hours: 36

GRE: Not required

Tuition: $392 (PCH)

Program Overview:
Consider this MPA program if you aim to serve the public through strong leadership and effective policies. This fully online program prepares you for management careers in public service, non-profit organizations, and the private sector. Gain the skills to implement policies, create impactful programs, develop solutions to public problems, and resolve public affairs issues.

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Accelerated MPA Programs

The accelerated class format allows students to focus intensely on their studies and complete the required coursework more quickly than in a traditional program. Accelerated programs are particularly beneficial for students who are looking to quickly advance their careers or who have time constraints that make a shorter program more appealing.

However, they can also be more demanding and require strong time management and study skills to successfully complete. Accelerated programs can come in many different formats, including combining classes to obtain two degrees at the same time. As a graduate student in the UNO, you can earn an MPA along with another degree in a compressed time frame.

Affordable MPA Programs

In Nebraska, tuition costs for MPA programs are also affordable compared to many other states. Nebraska’s lower cost of living can further enhance the affordability of obtaining an MPA degree.  UNO offers incredibly low tuition rates for both in-state students ($388 PCH) and out-of-state students ($820 PCH) compared to other schools. However, students should be mindful of other expenses, such as fees, books, and transportation, which can impact their overall budget.

All MPA Programs in Nebraska

School NameDegree Program NameStateCityNASPAA AccreditedOnline DegreeProgram Link
University of Nebraska at OmahaMaster Of Public AdministrationNebraskaOmahaYesYes

What Types of Careers Can I Pursue With an MPA Degree in Nebraska?

In Nebraska, MPA graduates can pursue unique careers that reflect the state’s specific needs and characteristics. Some of these careers include:

  • Rural Development Specialist: Nebraska’s economy is heavily reliant on agriculture, and rural development specialists play a key role in supporting and promoting economic development in rural areas. These professionals work to identify opportunities for growth, secure funding for projects, and implement programs that benefit rural communities.
  • Water Policy Analyst: Water management is a critical issue in Nebraska, which relies heavily on irrigation for agriculture. Water policy analysts work to develop and implement policies that ensure sustainable water use, protect water quality, and address issues such as drought and flooding.
  • Natural Resources Manager: Nebraska’s natural resources, including its forests, grasslands, and wildlife, require careful management and conservation. Natural resources managers work to protect and preserve these resources, often collaborating with government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and private landowners.
  • Community Health Planner: Improving access to healthcare and promoting healthy lifestyles are priorities in Nebraska. Community health planners work to develop and implement programs that address these issues, focusing on preventive care, health education, and access to services.
  • State Government Analyst: Nebraska’s state government employs a range of analysts to help develop and evaluate public policies. These analysts may specialize in areas such as education, transportation, or fiscal policy, providing valuable insights and recommendations to policymakers.

Overall, Nebraska offers a range of unique career opportunities for MPA graduates, particularly in areas related to agriculture, natural resources, and rural development. By leveraging their skills and knowledge, MPA graduates can make a meaningful impact on the state’s communities and economy.

MPA Programs in Other States