Public Administration

Master of Public Administration (MPA)

Meet Julie Matthews, MPA in Public Administration

“Apart from my peers with diverse backgrounds that truly enrich the discussions and debates we’re able to have, I think there is an incredible faculty in the program that understands the importance of facilitating this dialogue.”

Why did you come to Western for your graduate degree?
Western is a highly reputable school located in a city that has a lot to offer. More specifically, I came to Western because of its unique MPA program. The MPA program is the first of its kind in Canada to have a local government focus. The program has a very strong interdisciplinary faculty, and is ideal for professionals working full time. As someone who works full time and is not local to London, the flexibility that the program offers has been wonderful.

What would you like to share with the Western graduate community?
I think the best suggestion or comment I could give a fellow graduate student would be advice I received from a leader, and that is: own your seat. When I began my graduate studies, I felt a bit of imposter syndrome – self-doubt about whether I deserved my program seat crept in; however, once I reframed my mindset and started to “own my seat” – that is – participate fully and confidently, I have been able to give more to the program, but also get way more out of it.

Where’s your favourite place on campus to work?
For me, graduate studies has changed the way I work and study. While I would have gravitated to quieter places such as the library in my undergrad, I find myself gravitating to collaborative spaces such as the Western Active Learning Space (WALS).

What’s the best advice you could give to someone considering applying to your graduate program?
I think that my background – both academically and professionally – is a bit different than the typical applicant to the MPA program. A business undergraduate degree and progressive roles in healthcare aren’t the norm; however, part of the beauty of this program is that while it has a local government focus, students come from diverse backgrounds and levels of government. This contributes to the great debates, discussions, and collaborations in the classroom and beyond. Generally, my advice would be – if you feel that you have something to contribute and something to gain from applying to this program – just do it!

Program Websites

Program Contact

Heather Pierce (
Graduate Assistant

Department of Political Science

Western University
Social Science Centre, Rm 7335
London, Ontario N6A 5C2

t. 519-661-2111 ext. 80501
f. 519-661-3904

Western's Masters of Public Administration (MPA) is designed for mid-career local government administrators who wish to further their public management skills, as well as for future professionals looking to enter the field. The MPA is Canada’s only public administration program with a local focus. MPA courses offer specialized education in local administration and policy analysis, thoroughly preparing students for the challenges of modern community, urban and regional governance and administration.

Program Length

  • 3 Terms (Full-time studies)
  • 7-10 Terms (Part-time studies)

Program Design

  • Full-time or part-time study
  • Project-based

Tuition and Fees

Tuition and fee schedules (per term) are posted on the Office of the Registrar's website at

Graduate Student Affordability Calculator

Use this helpful tool to estimate how much money you will need to pay for your tuition, fees, housing, food, and other necessities for a 12-month (three term) academic year.

Admission Requirements

  • Applicants without relevant employment experience must possess a four year honours degree in the social sciences (with at least a B+ average) and demonstrate that they have taken at least two senior undergraduate courses concerned with local government, public administration and/or urban studies.
  • Applicants who have at least five years of Canadian local government employment experience are also expected to have an undergraduate or professional degree, but recommendations for special admission can be made in exceptional circumstances on a case-by-case basis. Applicants without an undergraduate or professional degree must submit a one-or two-page statement explaining how they think their experience compensates for their lack of formal academic qualifications.

Additional Requirements

English Language Proficiency

Applicants whose first language is not English must furnish evidence of their proficiency in the use of the English language:

Application Deadline

  • January 30
Acceptance notification begins in mid-March.