A graduate program focused on public leadership, civic engagement, and community organizing
The CU Denver Political Science Department houses the Center for New Directions in Politics and Public Policy. Through the Center, we offer a Master’s Degree in Political Science with an emphasis in politics and public policy, and an undergraduate BA with a concentration in public policy, as well as undergraduate or graduate level certificates in Public, Non-Profit and Community Leadership. All of the programs and the courses help students develop the political acumen necessary for being effective leaders and agents of change in neighborhoods, governmental jurisdictions, non-profits, and community-based organizations.
Students in New Directions are a mixture of recently matriculated undergraduates looking to jump-start community development and government careers, as well as working professionals in the public and non-profit sectors, elected officials; and community activists. Our students come from a wide range of demographic, occupational, and personal backgrounds.
The Center's programs feature a civic leadership and community development curriculum that emphasizes fieldwork, professional internships and action-research relevant to real-world concerns. We maintain active partnerships with local and rural government jurisdictions across Colorado, with many Denver-area non-profits and community-based organizations, and with social justice activists in such areas as immigrant rights, affordable housing, homelessness, the labor movement, and alternative economic institutions like worker cooperatives. All our students are given opportunities to earn their Masters' degrees while completing fieldwork, internships, or action-research projects in collaboration with these governmental and community partners.
Through such program innovations, we offer a unique educational and professional development program unlike any other in Colorado.