Welcome to Fels Institute of Government

Preparing the next generation of public and nonprofit leaders

Stand out as a public or nonprofit leader with a Fels education in public administration. Fels offers you a personalized curriculum combining analytical and practical experience and a tight-knit campus community within a world-class research institution and major US city.

Master of Public Administration students

Master of Public Administration

Begin or advance your public career in one academic year.

Executive Master of Public Administration students on campus

Executive Master of Public Administration

Enhance your existing career with this flexible, low-residency program.

Non-Degree Program student in class

Non-Degree Program

Enroll in Fels courses without committing to a full degree program.

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Fels fast facts

Top 2%

Fels MPA and Executive MPA grads’ median earnings are in the top 2% of MPA programs nationwide*


Percentage of MPA Class of 2022 alumni who were employed, working on political campaigns, or continuing education within six months of graduating


Student to faculty ratio

*Source: Department of Education College Scorecard Data Release from April 25, 2023

Faculty co-directors’ welcome

John Lapinski and Lauren Russell, Faculty Co-Directors

"The Fels experience is shaped by our dynamic students and enriched by faculty and staff committed to your academic and professional success. Our programs equip future public leaders with the managerial and analytical toolkit needed to think critically and solve complex societal issues. Immersed in Philadelphia, an inspiring civic laboratory, students can make an impact locally or use the skills they learn in the classroom to effect change in communities across the globe. Fels graduates are a connected community and stand out wherever they go for their ability to innovate and generate solutions."

John Lapinski and Lauren Russell, Faculty Co-Directors


Photo of Dr. John Lapinski
Dr. John Lapinski shares what polls can tell us ahead of the 2024 presidential election
Patrick Gushue (MPA ‘24) and Meg Turner (MPA ‘24)
Two Fels MPA students selected as Presidential Management Fellowship (PMF) finalists
Photo of Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker
Mayor Cherelle Parker to Give Keynote Address at Fels Institute of Government 2024 Graduation
Photo of Pete Buttigieg
Fels welcomes Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg for the Public Policy in Practice speaker series


Since 1937, the Fels Institute of Government at the University of Pennsylvania has pioneered the training and practice of public administration. Today, we continue to build on our legacy preparing the next generation of public leaders.

The heart of the Fels Institute of Government is Fox-Fels Hall, referred to by the Fels community as “the mansion.” Dating back to 1907, the Colonial Revival was originally the home of American philanthropist, humanitarian, and businessman Samuel S. Fels. In 1950, it was gifted to Penn to house the Fels Institute of Government. The history-rich mansion has been our program’s home ever since, providing classrooms and study spots for our students, offices for our administrative team, and indoor and outdoor gathering spaces for a host of student and alumni events held throughout the year.

Kirsten Heine, Executive MPA '23

Spotlight on Fels

What our alumni are saying

“Fels will make you excited about what you’re doing and give you ideas for what you want to do. The program energizes you in a different way than anything else that you do as a professional.”

Kirsten Heine, Executive MPA '23