Message from the Director

The Master of Public Policy, Administration and Law (MPPAL)

Naomi C. Couto

The MPPAL program was designed for busy, working professionals who want to advance their careers in the public sector by obtaining a degree part-time while continuing to work full-time. Created in 2007, the program attracts highly motivated and well organized individuals. Alumni feedback continues to be consistent in their praise of the built-in support networks from their fellow students and faculty alike.  Designed on the cohort model, where you take the majority of your courses with the same classmates, students gain an instant networking circle that is supplemented by the many engaged alumni, professors and practitioners that they encounter in our classrooms and at our celebrated events. Having direct access to these networks is also a wonderful opportunity for the few exceptional students that enter the program directly after completing their BAs.

Given the unprecedented numbers of  public servants who are expected to retire over the coming decade, there certainly has never been a better time to consider a career in government or in the broader public sector.  That said, we have heard from many of our students that the skills learned in the MPPAL program are also highly desirous in private sector careers such as the finance, insurance sectors, and other non-governmental organizations (NGOs) owing to their public sector intersections.

Today's public sector careers require a diverse, interdisciplinary skill set. With this in mind, the program is predicated upon three pillars as the foundation for the development of these competencies. These unique thematic modules are: public management & finance; law & ethics; and, public policy & analysis. Each module consists of three half (3.0) courses. Since the MPPAL program was originally designed solely as part-time curriculum, all of our required courses are held in the evenings and on the weekends. The program offers students the flexibility of either Saturday or Sunday full day classes. While it is a concentrated full day of learning, we have found that our students appreciate the opportunity to fully engage with their classmates and instructors in this manner. Both weekend and evening classes include light beverages, while on the weekends we provide a continental breakfast and a light lunch. Additionally, our students appreciate the fact that they can choose from two locations to study from: while it is on a “first come first served” basis, students are asked to express their interest in attending classes at either York’s main Keele campus or at a downtown location. (TBA). We are pleased to note that all course material is covered in your program fee!

With the addition of a full-time option as of March 2019, we are now able to offer an accelerated version of the MPPAL program to a select number of students that our Admissions Committee will consider. The full time option is typically offered to 3-5 students per year. In brief, students in the full time option will complete the program in one year, while working part-time in the public sector and study alongside their part-time peers, providing an excellent opportunity for networking. Students interested in this option will find more information here. 

York University remains a leader in championing social justice and diversity. The MPPAL program is aligned with this York long standing philosophy and the program’s special focus on law, ethics and good governance; moreover, the MPPAL program boasts a significant complement of award-winning teachers, individuals dedicated to teaching whose research imbricates the disciplines of economics, sociology, political science, business, finance, human resource management and law. Our professors and professional instructors bring a wide range of public sector backgrounds, theoretical knowledge and real-world experiences, making the MPPAL program the top choice amongst our candidates.

I invite you to further explore our program and get to know our superlative faculty members and alumni by scrolling through their profiles.  Please feel free to contact me directly or Ms. Jasmattie Jewan, the MPPAL graduate program assistant, should you have any questions.

Sincerely,

Naomi C. Couto,
Graduate Director of the MPPAL Program (GPD)
sppagpd@yorku.ca