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DATE: August 9, 2004

UM-Dearborn launches new master's degree program in public policy

DEARBORN---The University of Michigan-Dearborn will launch a new master's degree program in public policy studies this fall.

"The Master of Public Policy (MPP) degree is an interdisciplinary program designed for adult, part-time, college-educated students working in policy-related positions, and for students who wish to prepare for careers in public service and public affairs," according to Prof. Donald Anderson, chair of the Department of Social Studies at UM-Dearborn. The program will be the only evening MPP program offered in southeastern Michigan.

To earn the degree, students will need to complete 42 credit hours in public policy courses. The program was approved by the U-M Regents at their July meeting.

"The premise is that we should be aiming at good public policy, and that can only be attained by understanding both the methods of studying policy and the policy-making process itself," Anderson said. Students also may choose to complete policy-related courses offered in other programs on campus, including public administration, health psychology, business administration and liberal arts.

As part of the program, students will be expected to complete four master's projects or a single thesis "to demonstrate that they have the ability to analyze and design improvements in public policy," Anderson said.

There are a wide range of career options for graduates of the program, he said, including working as policy analysts in government units at the local, state and national levels.

"Their job titles vary, but they assist elected and appointed officials and agencies throughout government," Anderson said. "In addition, there are literally thousands of interest groups, trade associations and consulting firms operating in the private and non-profit sectors that employ individuals who analyze policy issues and engage in the political process."

In order to be admitted to the master's degree program at UM-Dearborn, potential students must have earned a bachelor's degree from an accredited school, but their undergraduate degree doesn't have to be in a related field.

For more information about the program or the admission requirements, contact the College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters Office of Graduate Programs at (313) 593-1183, the Department of Social Sciences at (313) 593-5096, or see the Web page at http://casl.umd.umich.edu/MPP/.

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