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Kent State University Public Administration Blog

In 2020, the nature of work changed rapidly. The pace of change has only continued to accelerate in 2021, with many companies keeping hybrid work schedules—a reality that seemed a distant dream prior to the pandemic. Fortunately for many learners hoping to achieve greater economic prosperity, higher education is changing, as well.
If recent newspaper headlines are to be believed, many people are wondering if the U.S. government is getting too large. While it’s true that over 15% of the workforce is involved in the military, public and national service, the size of the U.S. government proportionate to the total population has actually shrunk in the last 50 years.
April 08, 2021
Before you commit to an advanced degree such as a master's of public administration, it's important to consider whether it will be worth the investment of your time and money. For some people, an MPA program can be a life-changing experience that prepares them for professional success and greater personal fulfillment. For others, an MPA may not be the right choice.
It’s easy to think of technology as flashy and fun: the newest TikTok video, the latest virtual background, the most thrilling special effects. Though we may not realize it, technology also plays an enormous role in the progress and achievements of the public sector.
“Broadly speaking, the public sector refers to any part of a state or national economy that is tied to public programs or services and is controlled by the government.” You may find public sector employment opportunities in the military, law enforcement, organizations managing infrastructure (public roads, bridges, tunnels, water supply, sewers, electrical grids, telecommunications, and so on), departments of public transit or public education, and in healthcare and the government itself.
When you think of “public administration,” you may envision managing budgets for a city transportation department or improving the efficiency of a town’s public health division.
By Ashley E. Nickels, PHD and Amanda D. Clark, PHD Respond to the need for change in your community. The NASPAA-accredited Kent State Master of Public Administration program will prepare you to focus on ethical leadership, budgeting and financial management in the private and nonprofit sectors, while you learn to comprehend and utilize complex nonprofit and public sector laws and strategic planning.
Careers in government and public administration often attracts idealistic people who want to make a difference in our democracy and in the lives of their fellow citizens. But what does it actually take to become a leader in bureaucratic structures at the municipal, state and federal levels?
We have all heard the term ‘social justice,’ but its importance and history remain unclear to many of us. In the mid-1800s, the Italian Jesuit Luigi Tapparelli d’Azeglio1 first introduced the term as an economic concept. Seeing extreme levels of inequality and economic distress caused by the social class system in Europe, Tapparelli d’Azeglio derived the term based on Thomas Aquinas’ idea that, in addition to doing the right thing, we should strive to do what is necessary for the betterment of others.
My name is Kim Ainsworth Klaskin and I am a longtime federal government employee and am currently a management analyst with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. I’m also an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Public Administration.
There are many reasons to choose to pursue a career in the public sector rather than in the business world. Often, people are drawn to public or nonprofit careers because doing so gives them an opportunity to do good and enact change for the better, rather than just increasing profits for a corporation. But even if you know you want to work in government or at a nonprofit organization, the exact path you follow can vary greatly.
If you enjoy leading others, improving systems, overcoming complex challenges and helping shape the direction of a business or organization, you might be a good candidate for the role of director of administration.
“What does a public administration salary look like?” The path to public good is a personal one, but odds are nearly every person entering the field wonders what kind of salary they can expect. When you think about public administration your mind may automatically drift toward thoughts of government and nonprofit roles, but there are lucrative roles in the private sector as well.
January 10, 2020
If you're ambitious, interested in municipal government and hoping to make change in your local community from the top down, the role of city manager may be the perfect career goal for you. It's an excellent choice for well-organized, diplomacy-minded professionals in public administration.
When life feels unpredictable, most people want a plan for certainty. That’s especially true when it comes to making decisions about careers and weighing the pros and cons of graduate school. While no crystal ball will predict exactly what jobs will exist in the global economy in the years and decades ahead, authorities suggest that lifelong learners will have the advantage in getting hired and promoted.
One of the best things about working in the public sector is that it gives you many ways to make a difference in your community, no matter what role you fill. You can be confident that you'll be part of an organization or government body that has the power to change the world (or at least your community) for the better.
In the world of public administration, there are frequent references to the “public sector.” But what exactly is the public sector? And why does it require such careful attention and monitoring by public officials? Broadly speaking, the public sector refers to any part of a state or national economy that is tied to public programs or services and is controlled by the government.
In a campaign event at Madison Square Garden in 1912, future President Woodrow Wilson said something that could be considered a mission statement for his life’s work: “There is no cause half so sacred as the cause of a people. There is no idea so uplifting as the idea of the service of humanity.”
The Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA) exists to uphold top-tier standards in training and education for public servants, and it also manages a peer-review quality assurance process for graduate programs related to public policy and administration.
No matter the industry in which you plan to pursue employment, investing in a master’s degree can help you rise to the top of your organization. But not all master’s degrees are created equal.
Imagine a town that wants to improve access to its public buildings. Theoretically, the citizens of the town could appeal to their elected officials for the change and maybe vote on a ballot measure. Once that measure has passed, officials could craft a policy addressing the need for improved access, and then allocate the funds...and then things get a little tricky.
Public Technology for the greater good It should come as no surprise that over 80 percent of adults in the United States use the internet.1 In fact, over half the world’s population owns a smartphone—a technology that relies exclusively on broadband for many of its primary functions.2 So, with the proliferation of internet usage being what it is, you’d expect that a similarly high percentage of citizens have access to affordable and reliable internet.
Find the blueprint to better administration with an MPA. It’s no secret. The public’s confidence in the government is on the decline. In fact, a stifling 76 percent of citizens believe that political corruption is a critical problem facing us today. According to Kent State University professor Mark Cassell though, “When we talk about failed states, what we’re talking about is failed administrations.”
A Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree helps prepare administrative professionals for advanced positions within the public sector, government and nonprofit organizations. Explore the infographic below to learn how an MPA can help pave the way to more senior job opportunities.
The Department of Political Science would like to welcome our newest assistant professor, Ashley Nickels, who will teach in the Kent State University Master's in Public Administration program. In May, Nickels will graduate with a Ph.D. In public policy and administration, with a specialization in community development, from Rutgers University.
January 20, 2016
What is social responsibility, and how can it lead to careers in public administration? The paths of those who have arrived in public administration careers are varied and sometimes unpredictable. Often, the professionals who serve the public best are the ones who never necessarily saw themselves fulfilling those roles to begin with.
Although not widely discussed, corrupt public figures in the U.S. presents a huge problem. Public corruption isn’t a topic that’s widely discussed, but at the same time it’s a subject that should be important to every American. The effects of corruption are as far reaching as they are damaging to individuals and communities and in the public sector; we can’t just sit back and ignore the ramifications of wrongdoing.