Frequently Asked Questions
- What is the Certified Public Manager Program?
- What are the program benefits?
- Who participates in CPM?
- Who can apply to CPM, and are there any prerequisites?
- Is the program nationally accredited?
- What are the requirements for earning the CPM?
- How much does it cost to take the CPM course?
- Who pays for the program?
- When is the deadline to apply?
- Can CPM be used for academic credit?
- How long is the CPM program?
- Where and how often are classes held?
- What happens if I miss a class?
- What are the specific certification requirements?
- What is the history of the program?
- How many people have graduated from the Kansas CPM program?
- Is there a CPM alumni society?
The CPM Program is a nationally accredited comprehensive management development program designed specifically for managers in federal, state, and local government.
The program's primary goal is to improve the performance of public sector managers and the organizational performance of local, state, and federal government.
The CPM program offers a comprehensive course of study by which public managers can acquire and apply best practices and theory to their management behaviors using prescribed sets of professional standards.
The curriculum applies theory to practical problems facing the participant, their agency/department, and citizens.
Those who complete the program earn a national trademark designation of CPM (Certified Public Manager).
The Certified Public Manager Program offers many benefits to both participants and their respective agencies. Such benefits include:
- strengthening leadership abilities;
- developing inter-agency contacts and communication;
- enhancing interpersonal effectiveness;
- encouraging innovation, creativity and new approaches to problem solving;
- linking customer service to public service; and
- continuing education through membership in the Kansas Society of Certified Public Managers and the American Academy of Certified Public Managers.
Kansas University—and some other Kansas institutions of higher education—may offer academic credit to CPM graduates seeking academic degrees.
Benefits to agencies include the Capstone Project, which is required of all CPM students. Through the Capstone Projects, CPM students—working in concert and with the explicit permission of their supervisor—consider and propose ideas that would improve agency operations.
The bulk of CPM class members are employees of federal, state, and local government, although we occasionally have representatives of non-profits and other organizations. Each class has its own character, and students consistently report that they learn as much from each other as they do from their instructors. The gender mix is about even and the ethnic mix is generally reflective of the state employment demography. Educational background varies, and our classes always feature a wealth of experience and a multitude of agency perspectives. The investment made by sponsoring agencies—in both tuition and time-off to take CPM—is a clear reflection of the value and promise of CPM participants.
While CPM is targeted to employees of federal, state and local government, past participants have also come from non-profit organizations and highly-regulated private operations such as utilities and hospitals.
The CPM program is a nationally recognized professional development program for government supervisors and managers. At its heart is the development and measurement of core competencies in the field of public administration.
The National Certified Public Manager Consortium monitors and accredits all CPM programs. Additional information on the National Consortium»
The program requires at least 300 hours of structured learning activities. The Kansas CPM program offers a blended learning approach of classroom hours, online learning, and outside assignments to meet 300 hours of structural learning. Students meet two days a month for one year. Such activities may include applied learning projects, readings, examinations, workshops, and courses. In addition, there must be a written demonstration of the participant's effectiveness in applying core materials to their actual job environment. Finally, the program must provide a substantive evaluation of all major curriculum objectives.
The cost for CPM — which is a year-long program — is $3,300*-$3500 for local, federal, and other employees and $2,800*-$3,000 for state employees. The lower cost for state employees reflects the fact that the PMC receives substantial state support for its operations. The fee covers tuition, materials, a mid-year conference, and end of the year graduation ceremony.
*The lower price in the range reflects a discount when an application is received by the early bird deadline.
Most commonly, the student's employing agency pays the CPM tuition fee. We have, however, had students pay their own way.
Applications are due by December 1 to receive the early bird discount, and we continue accepting applications, as space allows, until all classes are full. Early applications have the best chance of being assigned to the class location and time that best serves their needs. Late applications will be accepted and assigned to classes depending upon available space on the roster.
Each educational institution makes its own policy as to whether and/or how much academic credit will be given to CPM graduates. The University of Kansas offers academic credit towards the MPA graduate degree for CPM participation. If you have specific questions, contact Terri Callahan at 785-864-6864 or TCallahan@ku.edu for further information.
The CPM classes meet two consecutive days each month for one calendar year.
The CPM classes meet on a consecutive Tuesday and Wednesday (16 hour blocks) each month for one calendar year. Students are assigned to one class, although they may make up classes at other locations. Class locations are determined each year based on demand, though generally we offer the class in Topeka, the Kansas City area, and in a western or SE Kansas location. Here are the current year's locations and schedule.
Students must complete all modules. If a module is missed, students have the option of taking it at another location that same year or taking it when it is offered the next year. It is the student's responsibility to follow up on when the class is offered next. To receive a certificate of completion, students must make up missed modules within two years.
Certification requires completion of all course work, assignments, readings, and projects, as well as attendance. The Kansas CPM program also requires development of a Capstone Project—a written report in which the theory and skills learned in CPM are applied to actual workplace situations—as its final examination.
The Kansas Certified Public Manager program was developed in 1993 as a cooperative venture of the Kansas Department of Administration and the KU Public Management Center. In 2002, the Public Management Center took over sole responsibility for operating the CPM program, which was reaccredited by the National Certified Managers Consortium that same year.
Close to 1,600 people have graduated from the Kansas CPM program.
Certified Public Manager graduates are eligible for membership in the Kansas Society for Certified Public Managers, as well as the American Academy for Certified Public Managers».