Organizations and Associations
Pi Alpha Alpha
Pi Alpha Alpha membership is prestigious for our students as well as for our public administration program, and the university. We encourage all eligible public administration graduate students, alumni, and faculty to apply for induction. The mission of Pi Alpha Alpha is to acknowledge and encourage outstanding scholarship and accomplishments, promote the education and practice of the art and science that is public administration, and advance the highest caliber of public service through integrity, professionalism and creativity. Pi Alpha Alpha membership represents the highest level of academic achievement and the embodiment of the organization’s dedication to quality public service.For information pertaining to Pi Alpha Alpha membership criteria, please visit their website at https://pialphaalpha.org/ or contact the department at 912-478-1400.
Nu Lambda Mu
Nu Lambda Mu is an international honor society and is open to graduate students dedicated to the study of nonprofit management, philanthropy, and social entrepreneurship and enterprise. For information pertaining to Nu Lambda Mu membership criteria, please visit their website at https://www.nonprofit-academic-centers-council.org/ or contact the department at 912-478-1400.
MPA Student Association (MPASA)
Established in August 2010, the MPASA is a student-led organization dedicated to creating activities and events for MPA students that celebrate and promote public service. The organization seeks to enhance knowledge, expand the competitive strength of the MPA program, broaden networking opportunities and improve academic, professional and social programming experiences in the challenging and evolving field of public administration. All current MPA students are members of the MPASA. MPA students are highly encouraged to participate in all MPASA functions, as well as take an active role in the governance of the association by serving as an officer. Program alumni are welcome to participate in any MPASA functions. Please contact Dr. Kristina Patterson for more information about the MPASA.
Professional Associations in Public Administration
Alliance for Innovation (AFI)
The AFI is an international network of progressive governments and partners committed to transforming local government by accelerating the development and dissemination of innovations. They seek out innovative practices, challenge existing business models, exchange knowledge, and provide products and services that help our members perform at their best. Student membership is $20.
Alliance for Innovation
411 N. Central Ave., Suite 400
Phoenix, AZ 85004 http://www.transformgov.org
American Society for Public Administration (ASPA)
Membership includes students, academic specialists, and practitioners from local, state, and federal agencies. ASPA has one national meeting each year, and there are also regular multi-state regional meetings and local chapter meetings in many areas. ASPA publishes Public Administration Review (PAR), perhaps the most important journal in public administration, which includes articles of commentary, analysis, and research. Members also receive Public Administration Times, which includes job openings in various administrative fields, and articles on current events in public administration. Student membership rate is $50.
American Society for Public Administration
1301 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Suite 700
Washington, DC 20004 https://www.aspanet.org
Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA)
ARNOVA is a leading interdisciplinary community of people dedicated to fostering through research and education, the creation, application and dissemination of knowledge on nonprofit organizations, philanthropy, civil society and voluntary action. The Student/Academic Membership rate for this organization is $55.
550 W. North St., Suite 301
Indianapolis, IN 46202 http://www.arnova.org
Georgia Center for Nonprofits (GCN)
The mission of the Georgia Center for Nonprofits is to build thriving communities by helping nonprofits succeed. Through a powerful mix of advocacy, solutions for nonprofit effectiveness, and insight building tools, GCN provides nonprofits, board members and donors with the tools they need to strengthen organizations that make a difference on important causes throughout Georgia. For more than 20 years, GCN has served as a cornerstone of support for Georgia’s nonprofit and philanthropic community by delivering a wide range of services and support. Our members span the nonprofit world in scale and scope—from international organizations to corporate philanthropies, foundations, and community initiatives. Student memberships are available for students enrolled full-time in an undergraduate or graduate program. To apply, contact the Membership team at 678-916-3080.
Georgia Center for Nonprofits
100 Peachtree Street NW, Suite 1500
Atlanta, Georgia 30303 http://www.gcn.org
Georgia City-County Management Association (GCCMA)
The GCCMA is the recognized affiliate organization of ICMA, the professional association of appointed administrators servicing cities, counties, regional councils, and other local government in the State of Georgia. Founded in the 1950s by a small group of managers interested in professional development, the GCCMA membership now includes city and county managers and administrators, directors of regional development centers, and their principal assistants. Several State agencies are represented among the membership, in addition to representatives of the Association County Commissioners of Georgia and the Georgia Municipal Association. Student membership is $25.
Georgia Municipal Association
P.O. Box 105337
Atlanta, GA 30348 http://www.gccma.com
Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA)
The purpose of the GFOA is to enhance and promote the professional management of governments for the public benefit by identifying and developing financial policies and best practices and promoting their use through education, training, facilitation of member networking, and leadership. Membership in the GFOA is open to everyone whose career, studies, or interests involve government financial management. The Education Membership rate is $40, and $35 of your total membership dues pay for a subscription to Government Finance Review, GFOA’s bimonthly magazine.
Government Finance Officers Association
203 N. LaSalle Street, Suite 2700
Chicago, IL 60601-1210 http://www.gfoa.org
International City/County Management Association (ICMA)
ICMA is a professional and educational organization representing appointed managers and administrators in local governments throughout the world. Members receive bi-weekly newsletters and the monthly publication of Public Management magazine. The Department of Public and Nonprofit Studies is home to an ICMA Student Chapter, which affords all MPA students a free student membership. Instructions for signing up are available by contacting the department or your faculty advisor.
International City Management Association
777 N. Capitol Street, NW, Suite 500
Washington, DC 20002 http://www.icma.org
International Hispanic Network (IHN)
The purpose of the IHN is to encourage professional excellence among Hispanic local government administrators, to improve the management of local government, to provide unique resources to Hispanic local government executives and public managers, and to advance the goals of professional, effective and ethical local government administration. The network works with other organizations, such as the ICMA, which shares common goals. The Student/Academic Membership rate for this organization is $10.
International Hispanic Network
1850 K Street, NW, Suite 870
Washington, DC 20006 http://www.ihnonline.org
International Personnel Management Association for Human Resources (IPMA-HR)
IPMA-HR is the recognized association for public personnel professionals. Members receive a monthly newsletter which includes position openings, a quarterly journal, and a membership directory. Student membership is $37.
International Personnel Management Association
1850 K Street, NW, Suite 870
Washington, DC 20006 http://www.ipma-hr.org
National Forum for Black Public Administrators (NFBPA)
The mission of the NFBPA is embodied in the organization’s commitment to strengthen the position of Blacks within the field of public administration; to increase the number of Blacks appointed to executive positions in public service organizations; and, to groom and prepare younger, aspiring administrators for senior public management posts in the years ahead. Students at the undergraduate and graduate levels are eligible to become members of the NFBPA, provided they subscribe to the goals and objectives of the NFBPA and shall be a full-time student as define by the institution in which they are enrolled. Student Membership is limited to four consecutive years. Adults who are employed full-time and pursue part-time academic study are ineligible for student memberships. Student Membership is $25.
National Forum for Black Public Administrators
777 North Capitol Street, NE, Suite 807
Washington, DC 20002 http://www.nfbpa.org
Student Handbook and Development
MPA Professional Development Activities
Part of the MPA experience is gaining competencies and proficiencies beyond the classroom. To that end, pre-service and midcareer students are required to complete a variety of development activities over the duration of their graduate studies. Students are required to complete a minimum of eight development activities during their tenure in the MPA program – a minimum of four “Engagement in the Sector” and a minimum of four “Individual Skill Development” activities. A list of approved development activities will be provided each semester. While students may complete other development activities, they must seek approval in advance from their faculty advisor if they wish to count such activities toward the programmatic requirements. Students are strongly encouraged to complete these development activities throughout their graduate studies, as opposed to waiting until their final semester.
These activities are to be documented by the student and will be reviewed during semester advising sessions. Students are responsible for tracking and reporting any discrepancies to ensure all completed activities are accurately recorded.
Fall 2021 Activities
Engagement in the Sector
- Volunteer! (minimum of 10 hours)
- Emmaus Soup Kitchen (http://unitedministriessavannah.org/volunteer)
- Social Apostolate Opportunities (https://socialapostolate.org/volunteer)
- Open Hearts Community Mission (www.ohcm.org)
- Soup Kitchen at Statesboro First United Methodist Church (https://www.statesborofirst.com/soup.html)
- Safe Haven (https://safehavenstatesboro.org/become-a-volunteer/)
- Hearts and Hands Clinic (http://theheartsandhandsclinic.org/student-volunteers/)
- Virtual volunteering identified by the Office of Leadership and Community Engagement (https://students.georgiasouthern.edu/LeadServe/virtual-volunteer-opportunities/)
- Any other organization approved by your advisor.
- Attend a local city council meeting and county commissioner meeting
- Statesboro City Council
First Tuesday of the Month – 9:00am
Third Tuesday of the Month – 5:30pm
Second Floor of City Hall
- Bulloch County Board of Commissioners
First Tuesday of the Month – 5:30pm
Third Tuesday of the Month – 8:30am
Community Room, North Main Annex Building, 115 North Main Street
- Attend a local meeting in your home city or county.
- Statesboro City Council
- Attend a Local, Regional, or National Public or Nonprofit Management Conference!
- Southeastern Conference for Public Administration (SECoPA): (Virtual – 9/23-24 – $25 Student Registration)
- Association on Budgeting and Financial Management (ABFM) Conference: (Washington D.C. – 9/30-10/2 $125 Student Registration)
- International City Management Association (ICMA) Conference: (Virtual and Portland, OR – 10/3-6 – FREE for students)
- Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management (APPAM) Conference: (11/11-13 – Austin, TX – $50 Student Registration)
- Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations (ARNOVA) Conference: (11/18-20 – Virtual and Atlanta, GA – $150 Student Registration, Virtual Rate TBD)
The GS Graduate Student Organization awards a limited number of travel grants for students engaging program-related travel. For application information and deadlines see: http://cogs.georgiasouthern.edu/gso/
- ICMA Webinar – Courageous Conversation Webinar Series
Watch and reflect on the following two recorded webinars (free to view)
Creating a Truly Inclusive Culture (recorded July 20, 2021)
The LGBTQIA+ Experience in Local Government (recorded June 15, 2021)
After watching both webinars, provide a one-page write up to your advisor reflecting on the key points and ideas that you took away from the webinars.
Individual Skill Development
- Schedule a Mock Interview with Career Services: The interview is one of the most important steps in a successful job search process. Preparation is key to acing the interview.
Set-up an interview at: https://students.georgiasouthern.edu/career/students/interviewing/schedule-a-practice-interview/
Provide the details of and feedback from your interview to your advisor.
- Complete an online leadership course: The Office of Leadership and Community Engagement at Georgia Southern University has identified several online leadership courses that can be completed for individual skill development credit. See the courses at:
Speak to your advisor about which course(s) would be most beneficial to complete.
- Take an online training course or pursue a certificate from Nonprofit Ready: Nonprofit Ready (https://www.nonprofitready.org/) “partners with experts in nonprofit management and online learning to make the best professional development resources available to you anywhere, anytime, at no cost” (Nonprofit Ready, n.d.). Sessions are offered in grant writing, nonprofit leadership, starting a nonprofit, board governance, nonprofit finance, volunteer engagement, nonprofit marketing, and nonprofit human resources. Students will need to create a free account in order to get started. This resource should only be used for professional development credit by students in the nonprofit concentration. Students must complete a minimum of one hour for one credit.
- Community Development “Crash Course”: Public administrators are called upon to engage community members to provide input for decision making, support in implementing projects, and engage in shared governance. This can be difficult without understanding various barriers to engagement and approaches to engaging diverse communities. In this workshop, students will be introduced to practical skills in community organizing, civic engagement, and facilitating conversations with diverse communities. with Dr. Kristina Patterson.
WHEN: Friday, October 8 from 3:00pm – 5:00pm.
WHERE: Carroll, Rm. TBD
REGISTRATION: Send an email to MPA@georgiasouthern.edu to register for this workshop.
- Race and Public Administration Reading Group: Facilitated by Dr. Candice Bodkin and Dr. Kristina Patterson. Scholarship in public administration tends to focus on the responsibility of the individual public administrator to combat structural racism and promote equity. However, how much power does the individual public administrator (or even the field of public administration) have to dismantle the structural racism that pervades our policies, institutions, and society? We will meet 2 x’s per semester to discuss themes and readings that examine this broad question.
GETTING INVOLVED: Send an email to Dr. Patterson (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you are interested in joining this group. The first meeting (on Zoom) will be the week of 8/30-9/3, based on schedules of interested students, and the second meeting will be the week of 10/25-10/29.
Last updated: 8/9/2021