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MPA Culminating Experience (PA 6550 Capstone Project)


Starting in the Fall of 2024, the MPA program is transitioning from a Comprehensive Exam to a Project Based Course (PA 6550) for the culminating experience of the degree.  Students should plan on changing their catalog year to reflect this change in program requirement. 


Introduction to the Capstone (Project based course)

The capstone brings together your learning in your MPA classes.  Students should register for the PA 6550 Capstone Course in their last semester (the chair can approve this be taken in the second to the last semester if needed).


General Considerations

Credit for PA 6550 will be awarded for earning a B or better in the class, the competition of an instructor approved project,  plus completion of several evaluation and career development activities including:

  • Completion of an online Exit Survey.   NOTE: The Reflective Essay is now part of the Exit Survey, it is not a separate activity.
  • Completing a variety of Career Development Activities. View the Career Development webpage


Class Format

PA 6550 is a course on strategic planning for public and non-profit sectors. Students in this class will work to create a final project that is associated with a strategic planning process, including the production of a final, professional-quality  document and presentation.  Projects will be archived by the department. 

Please contact the the MPA Director, Dr. Robert Stokes -  with any questions about the process.