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Master Public Information Officer Program

Program Description

The Master Public Information Officer Program is a three-course series that prepares public information officers for an expanded role in delivering public information and warning using a strategic whole community approach.

The program reinforces the qualities needed to lead whole community public information/external affairs programs, provides relevant management theories and concepts, and uses case studies to enhance public information/external affairs skill sets. MPIOP participants work within a collaborative environment on projects and establish a network of peers.

MPIOP participants will contribute to the body of knowledge for emergency management related public information. This includes evaluation of leadership, group dynamics and functional best practices of joint information centers (JICs) by monitoring student activity during advanced public information officer course offerings.

Master PIO student papers can be found at this link.

E/K0389 – Master Public Information Officer – Implementing Communications Strategies for Whole Community Leadership

E/K0393 – Master Public Information Officer – Applying Advanced Concepts in Public Information and Communications

E0394 – Master Public Information Officer – Mastering Public Advocacy Plans to Create an Effective Community of Stakeholders


  • Demonstrate how to use networking to influence programs, organizations and environments by conducting a networking activity;
  • Describe how to explain to stakeholders the importance of engaging community executives in communications planning by applying the whole community concept to an analytical activity;
  • Assess science-based research methods available to grow the Public Information body of knowledge by drafting initial ideas for the individual capstone project;
  • Examine leadership lessons by participating in a group Executive Reading session;
  • Apply the basic concepts of Disaster Behavioral Health by analyzing a case study;
  • Promote public information training and exercises in the organization and community by developing a community or agency specific training and exercises plan;
  • Contrast strategic and executive concepts for a public information case study; and
  • Implement the next steps of the Master Public Information Officer program.


  • Discuss organizational analysis in preparation for analysis of a joint information center functional exercise;
  • Discuss techniques for analyzing interpersonal relationships within a Joint Information Center during a functional exercise;
  • Design a process for analyzing a joint information center functional exercise;
  • Analyze a functional exercise for personnel management trends, best practices leadership practice;
  • Evaluate interpersonal relationships as they pertain to joint information center practice during a functional exercise;
  • Design a report outlining results of the functional exercise analysis that will contribute to the public information body of knowledge.


  • Develop body of knowledge report through consolidated review of multiple joint information center functional exercise analysis reports;
  • Propose how strategic PIO leaders coordinate the actions of stakeholders and emergency management agencies to achieve a common purpose; and
  • Design, Develop and implement a research project to contribute to the public information body of knowledge.

MPIO Paper Requirement

The MPIO paper is the culminating experience of all MPIO participants designed to reflect the MPIO participant’s commitment to lead the future of public information. The MPIO paper is an original paper, developed and finalized over the course of the 1-year program. Strict deadlines are assigned during key stages and failure to meet the deadlines will preclude a participant from completing the program.


MPIOP is for public information officers with the pertinent background and extensive experience as a full-time public information officer who have demonstrated a sphere of influence capable of advancing the relevance of whole community external affairs.

Application Process

The Emergency Management Institute (EMI) Emergency Management Professional Program Branch will start accepting applications for the Master Public Information Officer Program (MPIOP) from April 1 – June 1, 2023 for the Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 Cohort. A formal selection board will convene to review the application packages with an announcement of the results made to applicants in September.

There are a limited number of spaces for the Cohort and applications are expected to be very competitive in nature. Applicants are encouraged to review all selection and application requirements before submitting their application package.

Application packages will be reviewed by the selection committee. Application Package documents along with your E/L/K0388 Advanced Public Information Officer certificate (no substitute or waiver and must have been completed 2017 or later) must be submitted to the Master Public Information Program mailbox at: Any attachments other than the required Application Package document will not be considered. Incomplete application packages will not be considered by the selection panel.

This document needs to be downloaded and saved to your PC prior to filling it out. This one document, which is a fillable PDF Form, is all you need to send to along with your E/L/K0388 certificate to be considered for this program.

Once the Application Package is complete with attachments and signatures, save the document as a PDF file with the following file naming convention: 

  • LastnameFirstname.MPIOP.FY24.  Example:  PolitanoPhilip.MPIOP.FY24

This form includes:  

  • Candidate Information 
  • cover letter requesting consideration for admission to the program and specifying the applicant’s qualifications and expectations of the program. 
  • Resume
  • Master Public Information Officer Program Commitment Statement.  This indicates commitment to complete the entire program, which consists of the three resident courses at EMI and the MPIOP Paper. There are 3 date options for the E0393 course in this section.  Please indicate which date you prefer for this course if selected into the Program. 
  • Master Public Information Officer Program Questionnaire
  • Recommendation letter from your Supervisor.
  • Signatures.  This page has a location for the electronic signatures of both the applicant and the applicant’s supervisor. 

Application Selection Criteria

Applications will be evaluated based on the following requirements:

  • Pertinent background and extensive experience as a full-time public information officer
  • Basic PIO instructional experience (recommended not required)
  • Substantial continuing service and commitment to the field
  • Sphere of influence to advance whole community external affairs

Tentative Course Dates for FY24

  • E0389 – December 11-14, 2023
  • E0393 – January 22-26, 2024
    • April 22-26, 2024
    • July 29-August 2, 2024
  • E0394 – September 16-19, 2024

Tuition and Travel Reimbursement

There is no cost for tuition. Some individuals may be eligible for stipend reimbursement.

For information about travel reimbursement eligibility and procedures, see the NETC Welcome Package at: If you have any questions about your eligibility to receive a stipend, please contact Admissions either by email at or by phone at 301-447-1035.


  • State, local or tribal government representatives.
  • Recognized volunteer organization representatives.
  • Active emergency management organization representatives.
  • Representatives from state or local fire organizations.


  • Federal government. (Federal students are subject to federal travel regulations and travel under orders prepared by their office.)
  • Private industry employees.
  • Employees who are contracted to federal, state or local government entities (such as rural-metro departments).
  • Representatives of a foreign organization.

For questions on the application process please contact

Picture of EMI Campus with Emergenct Mangement Institute sign in foreground and Buildings N and O in the background
Picture of EMI Classroom

Important Notices

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