Public Safety and Law Enforcement Leadership

Tim Dolan, John Harrington

As the first higher education institution in Minnesota to offer public safety supervisory and executive education, this program educates professionals who aspire to be leaders in their organizations. Both the cohort-based in-person program and the online program encourage collegial learning and networking. You will join an unsurpassed network of more than 20 alumni currently working as police chiefs in Minnesota (Chiefs List). You will learn from core faculty and experienced police educators who bring diverse perspectives and provide personal attention. Learn more in our online information session.

  • The cohort-based, in-person, program meets on Tuesday evenings September through June for two years, with a special opportunity to earn three credits during the summer during a week in Washington, DC, studying federal and national policy making.
  • As a cohort you will take one 8-week class at a time together for two school years.

What you can earn

  • Master of Arts (M.A.)


Where you will learn

  • Cohort-based classes (Minneapolis/St. Paul area)


When to start

  • Every Fall


 MA + Certificate

MA: 31


For the MA:

EDLD 751   Public Safety Law
EDLD 752   Public Safety Leadership, Administration and Change
EDLD 753   Community Building/Dynamics of Community Organizations
EDLD 780   Integrative Seminar
EDLD 801   Leadership and Organizational Theory
EDLD 807   Foundations of Leadership: An Intellectual and Ethical Practice
EDLD 845   Communication, Conflict and Decision Making
EDLD 851   Community Assessment and Evaluation
EDLD 813   Leadership as Critical Reflection
EDLD 841   Federal and National Policy Making
EDLD 750   Contemporary Topics

Full course catalog with descriptions


 Weekly 5:00 - 9:30 P.M.

How to Apply

1 | Meet the requirements:

  • A cumulative minimum undergraduate G.P.A. of 3.0 (4.0 scale)

If you do not meet the above requirement(s), you may be eligible for special admission, which requires:

  • A cumulative minimum undergraduate G.P.A. of 2.75 (4.0 scale).
  • The completion of a standardized test, such as the Miller Analogies Test (MAT), GRE, GMAT or LSAT
  • A possible interview with an admissions person/committee.

2 | Submit the following application materials:

  • Application form
  • Two positive letters of reference from non-related individuals
  • Official transcripts for all undergraduate and graduate work (unless that work was completed at the University of St. Thomas)
  • Personal statement

3 | Submit the supplementary materials:

  • International Applicants:  (1) Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) required for any candidate whose primary language is not English. (2) Transcript Review: All international transcripts must be reviewed by an accredited evaluation service to determine U.S. equivalency of the degree awarded and the institution awarding the degree. Applications will not be reviewed for admissions until the official review is submitted.

Special Opportunities

Policy Trip to Washington D.C.

The cohort based Public Safety and Law Enforcement Leadership program includes a course in Washington D.C.  The trip offers unique opportunities to observe and interact with the policy process at a national level as well as meet and network with influential figures working and facilitating change in Washington D.C.

Ongoing Professional Development

Whether networking with leaders in the area of policy reform, being inspired by change agents working on locally, nationally and globally  or simply catching up on the latest qualitative research findings, annual events and conferences sponsored by the department of Leadership, Policy and Administration offer a variety of networking and professional development opportunities. Most events include continuing education units for a variety of professions.  

Real-world field experience

If your program includes a field experience element, the dedicated faculty and staff in your program will work with you to ensure that your experience will meet your interests and facilitate your growth, both personally and professionally. Throughout your time in your program, regularly scheduled meetings with faculty and peers offer the opportunity to form a strong professional network as you prepare to enter your field.