Skip to main content
Leadership in the Public Sector (Online)

Online Leadership in the Public Sector Program Rises to No.4 in National Rankings

The program achieved its highest ranking to date on the 2024 best online undergraduate programs list by U.S. News & World Report.

Withers Hall

The Leadership in the Public Sector (LPS) program, offered by NC State’s College of Humanities and Social Sciences, ranked No.4 in the nation on the 2024 best online undergraduate programs by U.S. News and World Report. It is the LPS program’s highest ranking to date.

The LPS program — NC State’s only fully online degree completion program — rose from 18th place last year and from 71st place in 2019.

The rise is due to “the tireless work of our extraordinary faculty and staff and the wonderful students who are drawn to this incredible program,” said Irwin Morris, the William T. Kretzer Distinguished Professor of Humanities. He is also the executive director of the college’s School of Public and International Affairs, the academic home for the LPS program.

In the 2024 rankings, U.S. News ranked online bachelor’s programs at 339 colleges and universities across the nation. It based the ranking on four key categories: engagement, services and technologies, faculty credentials and training and peer assessment.

This ranking is a huge testament to the program’s commitment to academic excellence and student success. To be sure, a few years ago the program’s core courses were Quality Matters certified, which is an international standard for online education.

“Placing in the top 5 in the ranking as well as being one of the few online undergraduate programs in the country to secure Quality Matters program certification shows that the LPS program provides our students with an academically rigorous education that is tailored to their needs,” said Traciel “Trace” Reid, an associate professor of political science and director of the program. “We take pride in our LPS program because it truly provides a high-quality online education with an on-campus feel.”  

The LPS program, which was launched more than a decade ago, is designed for students who have already completed some college coursework – typically 60 credit hours – through a community college or four-year institution. It appeals to many military and nontraditional students and focuses on providing them with the ethical, theoretical, and policy analytical skills necessary to be effective leaders in public sector organizations.