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Certified Public Manager® Program

The Iowa Certified Public Manager® Program (CPM) is the premium nationally accredited professional certification for public sector managers and directors.

About CPM:

The CPM designation is held by 950 leading public sector professionals in Iowa and is the professional credential of choice for public sector leaders.  Drake utilizes a practice-focused approach that emphasizes practical application of theory to improve effectiveness while meeting the challenges of today's public organizations. 

CPM is pursued as a unified learning group (cohort) of 25 professionals who meet 2-3 days each month over 18 months utilizing a mix of on-campus or virtual sessions.  A new "cohort" of learners is launched twice each calendar year.  See the "Schedules" heading below for details.   

We are certain you will find the Iowa Certified Public Manager® Program to be a positive and rewarding experience that will enhance your professionalism and strengthen your organization.  CPM is facilitated by Drake University in partnership with the State of Iowa.  Contact Lance Noe at (515) 271-2008 for more information. 

CPM Blends In-person with Virtual Learning

CPM sessions feature a blending format with 2/3 of sessions meeting in-person on the Drake campus and 1/3 meeting virtually.  Sessions that work best in a face-to-face setting will meet in-person while sessions that work well in a live/online format will enjoy the convenience of engagement from your home or office.  This mix of online with on-campus sessions lowers travel costs and travel time commitments while providing face-to-face engagement for specific courses.  See the course schedule for more information. 

What do I need from a technology perspective?  CPM is a very engaging experience whether offered virtually or face-to-face on the Drake campus.  Since major elements of this CPM cohort will take place online, we ask that each CPM learner have access to a computer or device with an internet connection plus a microphone and camera to allow virtual engagement with others in real-time.  

New Cohorts Begin each September and January!

Applications are taken throughout the year.  It is best to apply 1-2 months prior to the time you wish to begin to ensure a seat in the cohort of your choice.  See "Admission and Cost" heading below for application links.  

Leads to a Drake graduate degree: 

Iowa's CPM is uniquely designed to be integrated with the Drake University online Master of Public Administration degree.  Graduates of the CPM program who are otherwise well qualified for graduate school may reduce the required number of credit hours needed to earn the Master of Public Administration degree at Drake by up to nine credit hours.   

Time and Tuition Savings when applying CPM to the Drake Online MPA

Number of 3 credit-hour courses required without CPM*                     10

Number of 3 credit-hour courses required when utilizing the CPM**   7

Total Tuition for ten courses required to complete the MPA*   $21,420.00

Total Tuition for seven (7) courses**                                           $14,994.00

Tuition Savings when utilizing the CPM                                     $ 6,426.00

 *assumes an applicant who meets all requirements for admission to the Drake University Master of Public Administration degree program and the Fall 2023 tuition rate of $714.00 per credit hour.

**assumes an applicant who meets all requirements for admission to the Drake University Master of Public Administration degree program and who successfully completes the Iowa Certified Public Manager® (CPM) program within five years of beginning the Drake MPA program and the Fall 2023 tuition rate of $714.00 per credit hour.

To learn more about Drake MPA click here.

Admission and Cost of CPM:

Admission to CPM is based on professional experience criteria that includes: 1) managing two or more people, or 2) involvement in a professional project or activities, or 3) pursuing a graduate degree.  Applications are coordinated by our State of Iowa partners.  You may apply anytime for admission to the next available cohort.

The cost of the 300-hour CPM program is $3,500.00.  Most CPM learners are sponsored through their employer, however some choose to pursue the program as a private professional.  The fee is paid through the State of Iowa.  For more information about cost and applying contact (515) 281-5456 or see the State of Iowa CPM webpage



CPM Program Handbook Sept 2023

CPM Project Handbook Sept 2023


Congratulations graduates - CPM 38, December 2023

CPM 38 Group picture

The 38th cohort class of professionals completed the 18-month curriculum and now hold the nationally recognized professional designation Certified Public Manager®.  A new cohort begins on August 27, 2024.  Potential applicants are encouraged to contact Lance Noe at or phone 515-271-2008 for more information.  







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