Certified Public Manager®

Main page content

The 2020 CPM series has been postponed until September 2020. Submit your application now for fall. Session dates will be posted here when available.

Program Overview

The University of Washington Tacoma Certified Public Manager® Program (CPM) is a nationally accredited, comprehensive leadership and management development program for public managers and supervisors from all government levels. Washington State joins the more than 38 US states, the US Virgin Islands and the Netherlands, who make up the National CPM Consortium, which establishes the accreditation requirements. The Certified Public Manager® Program, accredited since 2014, is designed to create thoughtful practitioners who apply practical managerial techniques to address public-sector challenges. This 12 month program combines 40 hours of basic supervision training (a prerequisite) with 203 classroom hours, a 10-hour Leadership Development Project and a 50-hour Lean Six Sigma Capstone Project. Graduates earn a Lean Six Sigma: Green belt along with national CPM certification. Classroom sessions are supplemented with pre and post class readings, assignments, assessments, and video content. Successful completion of all modules is required for national certification. Course fee includes books, materials and assessment tools.

Download 2020 Module Descriptions here.

Who should attend?

This program is designed for high-achieving, career oriented public supervisors and managers who hold or desire to move into mid or senior level positions. This course requires pre-class and post-class readings and assignments where you will apply what you learn in the workplace. Plan on at least five hours of outside work per session.

Frequently asked questions

How can I pay for this program? Do you offer scholarships?

We do not currently offer any scholarships for this program, but we do have a few ways to make paying more affordable. Students may pay in full or term-by-term. We also accept third party payments, if your employer has a program that will pay for some or all of your certificate.

Why choose your program over another?

Great question! First, there is nothing quite like Certified Public Manager® in Washington State because the National CPM Consortium only allows one program per state. Compared with similar leadership and management programs offered within government organizations, we think that UW Tacoma stands out as the leader in high quality instruction, curriculum and innovative design. When you complete your certificate here, the "W" will follow you to your next job, holding value longer than any internal training program might. We use a practical, hands-on approach, our curriculum is based upon local needs determined by an advisory board of experienced local city, county and state public managers.

Can I complete this program while working?

Of course! Our program is designed specifically for working professionals. Most of our students are currently working in local government, and we encourage them to bring their work experience to class! Classes do meet during weekdays, and students can expect to have some work outside of the classroom.

How do I qualify for admission?

Students must be currently employed in first-level supervisory or mid-management positions in city, county, state, tribal or non-profit agency to be admitted to this program. Applicants must provide evidence in their application they have completed (or provide a written plan to complete) 40 hours of an approved first level supervision course(s) prior to certification. Download the Pre-Req Evaluation Form to see if your prior training qualifies.

Start your application now!