17+ Most Lucrative Public Administration Careers
There are thousands of different career paths you can choose from once you have completed your MPA degree program. Both local, state and federal governments and private businesses and companies hire those with an MPA degree making the possibilities endless. The following 17 career paths are examples of just how lucrative a career in public administration can be.
SEE ALSO: Public Administration Salary Outlook
- Liberty University - Master of Public Administration MPA
- Purdue University Global offers an online Master of Public Administration.
- Capella's online MPA uses a model that helps you apply what you learn in coursework in the real world. Develop skills to collaborate with diverse populations and manage people, technology, finances, and other resources that can improve community well-being. Plus, no GRE required.
- USC Price, ranked #3 in 2019 for public affairs by U.S. News and World Report, delivers an online Master of Public Administration program that can be completed in as few as 24 months.
SNHU offers an online MBA in Public Administration.
- American University brings DC to you with the online Master of Public Administration and Policy.
#1 News Reporter/Analyst
Television news agencies and newspapers are looking for individuals educated on public policies and programs so they can provide insight on various political situations. A MPA degree can give you the knowledge needed to provide those analyses.
Jobs in the news reporting industry that can require the individual to hold a Masters of Public Administration degree can include:
- News Writer
- News Reporter
- Data Analyst
The career path you wish to pursue in the news reporting sector will depend upon whether or not you feel comfortable in front of the camera or prefer to write and analyze data.
#2 Local Government Offices
Several career paths in the local government sector are available for those who have completed an MPA degree. Career paths include:
- City Director
- Urban Planning and Development Director
- Local Transportation Board
- Community Health Director
- Parks and Recreation Director
- Board of Directors for Education
- Police Commissioner
There are many programs that need to be implemented and managed on the local level. Everything from transportation, education and community health needs to have an executive that can oversee the program, organize the workers, and understand the impact such programs will have on the community and the community’s finances.
#3 State and Federal Offices
Just as the local government needs individuals to implement, manage and supervise programs so does the state and federal governments. Career paths on the state and federal government level can include:
- Working in the CIA
- Cabinet Member to the President
- Director of Transportation
- Representative for the United Nations
Career paths on the state and federal side are very similar to those in the local government. The only difference is jobs on the federal and state level require supervision of programs that are larger than those of the local programs, and more people will be under your direct supervision.
#4 The Private Sector
Companies and businesses require the assistance of those who have finished an MPA degree program because the skills they possess are very valuable. Possible career paths in the private sector include:
- CEO or COO of a Company
- Director of a Company
- President or Executive Vice President of a Company
Both for-profit and non-profit companies and businesses like to hire individuals who have completed their MPA degree program. The skills these individuals possess that companies want include the ability to develop programs, oversee workers and understand the impact such programs will have on the business.
The career path choices of those who wish to pursue a Masters of Public Administration degree are endless. Local, state and federal governments, as well as profit and non-profit companies are all seeking individuals with this valuable degree.
#5 Local Government Administrator
Many departments of the federal, state and local government in your area need to have accomplished and skills administrators to help them to run with the most efficiency possible. You could be involved in supervising staff, organizing budget meetings, supervising the budget, communicate with different levels of government, and create a strong bond between the community and the government agency
#6 Policy Manager
Most government agencies and nonprofit organizations have policy managers who have to have strong presentation and planning skills. Some of the most important duties in this job are to assess policies for their timeliness, reevaluate policies as needed, supervise employees, and display strong problem solving skills. You could work with a think tank that will explore if private companies and government agencies can work together on an environmental project, or you could help to obtain funding for social and educational programs.
#7 Public Housing Manager
This public administration professional oversees the entire operations of public housing within a particular housing facility. As a manager of such a facility, you need to deal with renting units, utilities, and ensure that all government regulations are followed. Also, you will need to oversee a staff of administrative and maintenance people, and also give all needed paperwork to fully document compliance with government regulations.
#8 Charity Manager or Director
An effective charity needs to raise money effectively and to administer how that money is used in various programs in the organization. Some of your most important duties will include the management of all key fundraising efforts, recruiting and training effective volunteers to accomplish key goals, and to educate the public about the importance of your charity.
#9 Budget Director
Many government agencies and nonprofit organizations need to have an effective and skilled budget director. Funds both from taxpayers and from members are limited, and those dollars have to be spent and allocated carefully. You may need to use various types of statistical analysis to determine where money can be saved, or where you need to make necessary cuts for the organization to prosper.
#10 Economic Development Director
This type of public administration professional oversees all of the programs that promote growth and development in the economic base of cities around the US. It is possible to find such positions at all levels of government – city, county, state and federal.
Some of the duties include coming up with good economic development programs and plans; proposing such plans to officials; organizing economic plans to assure they are properly implemented; and then serve as an effective liaison for business interests and officials in government.
#11 Public Affairs Director
You will work in the oversight of programs that help NGOs, government agencies and nonprofits to improve and strengthen their image with the public. You may write press releases, conducting outreach programs and doing fund raising.
Some of your other duties could include keeping effective relationships with public and private sector clients; doing speechwriting and interviews, conducting evaluations of marketing programs; and doing event management in a way that will increase and improve contact between public organizations and the public.
#12 Public Relations Consultant
You will provide effective strategic advice and counsel about the community and media relations. You also may be an intermediary between the public and the organization that you work for. Some of the tasks you may do include: writing press releases, managing news conferences and related events, and working collaboratively with marketing professionals to come up with popular PR campaigns.
#13 Human Resources Director
There are many public administration-related openings available in the HR field. You may work for a government agency or a nonprofit, or possibly a private company. You will recruit, interview and choose job candidates, administer the organization’s benefits and compensation, and resolve any issues between employees and management.
#14 Foreign Service Officer
Officers in the Foreign Service promote peace and prosperity by advancing the interests of the United States all through the world. Foreign Service Officers work at 250 international consulates and embassies around the world. The State Department administers the Foreign Service and offers exciting career options in business management, engineering, foreign affairs, human resources, office support and senior executive service.
#15 Public Administration Consultant
As a consultant, you can analyze the operations of a public or private sector entity and make recommendations on how they can achieve their goals and increase efficiencies. You also may work on how to increase funding for that organization, or assist in developing policy to help the organization meet their goals.
#16 Association Executive
Even though an association is a nonprofit and does not really make money, this organization still needs to be run in the most cost-effective manner possible. The operating budget comes from donations and association dues, so that money must be spent very carefully. As an executive for this type of organization, you will set goals, advance the agenda for members, and monitor the association’s budget.
#17 City Manager
You will be responsible for supervising all day to day activities of the city for which you work. You also can fulfill these types of job duties as the manager of a county.. You will need to carefully manage all operations and budgets for each underlying department in your city or county. Tax dollars are becoming more scarce in economic hard times, so every city and county needs an effective manager to minimize expenditures.
SEE ALSO: 30+ Online MPA Options