Top 10 MPA Career Resources
While the market for MPA graduates is growing, competition is still stiff, and any edge you can get will make it easier for you to distinguish yourself in the workforce.
1. Informative Websites
Websites like NASPAA International and GoPublicServices.org provide much-needed information on salary rates, market growth or contraction, and qualification requirements, among other pertinent topics. Staying current is of great importance whether you’re part of the workforce or hoping to join it.
2. The Right Program
Choosing an accredited MPA program that’s right for you is one of the most crucial decisions you’ll face. Evaluation of prospective programs is a key task, and you should make sure that whichever program you decide to attend suits your needs and ambitions as well as it can. Be selective when choosing an MPA program, evaluating its strengths and weaknesses against your own as well as how well the program will help you reach your career goals.
3. Employment Information
Employment information websites like The Wall Street Journal’s Career page are another excellent resource. Stay current on the sort of job opportunities available to you through web portals focused on the aggregation of job openings into manageable single locations.
The professionals who help you along the road to getting your MPA can also be an exceptional resource to you throughout your career from the first day on the job to retirement. The kind of contacts and procedural knowledge an experienced MPA with a career in teaching typically has are of great value to an up-and-coming public administrator.
5. Occupational Handbook
A comprehensive guide to an education and career as a public administrator, the Occupational Handbook is compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics as an aid to current or prospective MPA graduates. The handbook is a respected resource for many fields including teaching, law, nursing, and others. It provides important information like expected job prospects, working conditions, and earnings inside the public administration field.
6. The ASPA and EAPAA
These associations for public administration professionals and students, respectively, in the United States or in Europe, are prominent resources in the public administration community. Both sites organize and hold conventions for those involved in the field, as well as providing information on the state of the public administration field at home and abroad.
7. NASPAA International Portal
For MPA graduates and practicing public administrators abroad, the NASPAA International Portal is an invaluable resource. With conferences held worldwide and numerous resources for US nationals expecting to travel abroad in their careers, NASPAA provides a sense of continuity and support.
8. Association for Public Policy Analysis & Management
According to its masthead, the Association for Public Policy Analysis & Management is “a non-profit organization dedicated to improving public policy and management by fostering excellence in research, analysis and education.” With over 1,500 members ranging from the academic to the private sector professional, APPAM facilitates interactive growth of the field through seminars, conventions, and quality initiatives.
The importance of your own commitment to the field is crucial. Employers and the public will pick up on your enthusiasm, determination, and vigor. Those who thrive and advance in public administration demonstrate a high degree of professional commitment.
You, your education, and your experience are the most important resources you possess. Proper management of yourself and your career can lead to a rich life in public administration. With the right education, the proper assistance, and good career path decisions, public administration will reward you.
- http://stats.bls.gov/oco/, 2012.
- http://www.aspanet.org/public/, 2012.
- http://www.eapaa.org/, 2011.
- http://www.globalmpa.net/, 2012.
- https://netforum.avectra.com/eweb/StartPage.aspx?Site=APPAM&WebCode=HomePage, 2010.