CENTER FOR PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION AND POLICY (CPAP)
The Mission of the Virginia Tech Center for Public Administration and Policy (CPAP) is to promote good governance and the advancement of capable and ethical public service by providing outstanding education, research, and outreach in the theory and practice of public administration, management, and policy.
- To provide qualified public service professionals currently in service and pre- or early-career students who plan to become public service professionals with a rigorous program of study for developing managerial, analytical, and normative evaluation skills in public management and public policy.
- To prepare teachers and scholars for faculty service in colleges and universities around the country and the world, thereby broadening the scope of knowledge in public administration and policy studies among administrators and citizenry.
- To engage faculty, practitioners, and graduate students in systematic research and study designed to improve the quality of policy making and public service within the varied jurisdictions of government in the Commonwealth of Virginia and the national capital region, as well as nationally and internationally.
SCHOLARSHIP AND COMMUNITY
CPAP is more than an academic department; we are a community dedicated to thoughtful public service through scholarship. CPAP is small when compared with other nationally-recognized schools of public affairs and public administration, permitting our students greater personal attention in academic advising and career guidance. Our size enables our faculty, staff, and students to develop strong personal ties, friendships and professional relationships that last long beyond their time at CPAP. No event better illustrates CPAP’s commitment to both scholarship and community than our annual High Table celebration. High Table brings faculty, students, alumni, and invited guests together to consider important questions in public administration and public policy, and most of all to celebrate the life of the mind.
ONE PROGRAM, THREE LOCATIONS
We offer courses in Blacksburg, the university’s main campus, as well as in Richmond, the state capital, and in Alexandria, in the national capital region. Our multiple locations offer connections to local, state, and federal government, international institutions, and non-profits. Faculty and students travel among the campuses and are connected by video technology.
Faculty appear in the pages of top journals, including Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, Public Administration Review, Governance, and Policy Studies Journal. The journals Administration & Society and Law & Society Review are currently housed in our program.
Recent faculty books include:
Bureaucracy and Self-Government: Reconsidering the Role of Public Administration in American Politics
Democracy and Administration: Woodrow Wilson’s Ideas and the Challenges of Public Management
Disasters and the American State: How Politicians, Bureaucrats, and the Public Prepare for the Unexpected
Disaster and Sociolegal Studies
Empowering the White House: Governance under Nixon, Ford, and Carter
The Ethics of Public Administration and the Challenges of Global Governance
Mission Mystique: Belief Systems in Public Agencies
The New Case for Bureaucracy
New Public Governance: A Regime Perspective
Patriots, Settlers, and the Origins of American Social Policy
Rethinking Environmental Justice in Sustainable Cities: Insights from Agent-Based Modeling
Working With Culture: How the Job Gets Done in Public Programs
Classes are taught as seminars emphasizing student discussion, rather than in large lecture halls. Most classes have 10-20 students.
“Virginia Tech is well-known for its diverse student population, distinguished faculty, supportive alumni base, and unique 11-week Washington Semester Summer program.”
– Best Value Schools
CPAP: QUICK FACTS
- One program in three locations. Established in 1977 in Blacksburg, CPAP now offers degrees in Blacksburg, Alexandria, and Richmond. It is positioned to meet the distinctive educational needs of public administration professionals and scholars in each location, and to engage in research across all levels of American government as well as internationally. Students and faculty work together across locations, benefiting from engagement on a large university campus as well as in the United States and Virginia capitals.
- CPAP is ranked in the top 25 nationally in public management/administration by U.S. News & World Report, out of nearly 300 schools.
- Virginia Tech has been ranked 15th in the 2015 Best Value Schools ranking of the 50 most innovative public service schools in the United States.
- The MPA program is NASPAA accredited. NASPAA accreditation recognizes that a master’s degree program in public policy, affairs, or administration has undertaken a rigorous process of peer review.
- Diverse student population. Each location contributes to the robust diversity of distinctive student populations and government contexts. CPAP combines full-time and part-time students, students with federal, state, and local government experience, as well as professionals from the private for-profit and non-profit sectors. And CPAP draws students from several regions of the U.S. and the world.
- Faculty known for distinctive scholarship and teaching. CPAP faculty engage in world-class scholarship. From the founding faculty who established a unique scholarly signature with the theme of “refounding” public administration, to the most recent scholars to join CPAP, faculty work appears in top-ranked journals of the field and in books from prominent university presses, as well as in briefings to policymakers.
- We are home to the journals Administration & Society and Law & Society Review.
- Distinctive graduate-level certificate programs in Local Government, Public and Non-Profit Financial Management, and Homeland Security Policy. CPAP offers certificates for both degree and non-degree students, programs distinguished by their strategic responsiveness to the vital need to train executives, managers, and professionals in these areas, and the embedding of topics in rigorous scholarship as a path toward thoughtful public service.
- Affiliated faculty dedicated to the CPAP enterprise. CPAP’s affiliated faculty bring a wealth of professional and academic experience to teaching, participate regularly in CPAP events and student development, and are fiercely loyal to and contribute materially to the sustained success of the CPAP.
- A solid student and alumni/ae base. CPAP students recognize and embrace the special culture of CPAP and the close faculty-student connections that make the learning process transformational. As a result, CPAP enjoys a large, loyal, and very supportive graduates and superior networking opportunities for new students entering the program.
The Masters in Public Administration degree provides the skills needed for positions involving policy, management, or executive responsibilities in public and not-for-profit settings. Among other occupations, our recent graduates are currently working as policy analysts, higher education administrators, law enforcement officials, budget analysts, city/county administrators and non-profit executives.
The PhD in Public Administration/Public Affairs (PAPA) prepares scholars for university faculty careers, and prepares scholars and administrators for policy-making and senior management positions and it engages practitioners and graduate students in research in a range of fields. Alumni include nationally recognized scholars and public servants working in local, state, and federal government agencies.
The Local Government Management Certificate provides the next generation of local government managers with the tools to advance their careers and provide exceptional leadership within the communities where they work. Students are exposed to a full spectrum of local government issues, service delivery options, and management tools. The analysis of a real life, local government case study is central to each classroom experience.
The Graduate Certificate in Public and Non Profit Financial Management is designed to develop students’ understanding of the concepts and practice of financial management in government, university, and complex non-profit organizations. Available throughout the commonwealth through virtual classroom technology, the Public and Non-Profit Financial Management certificate is designed for full-time students as well as part-time and working professional students.
The Homeland Security Policy Certificate focuses on domestic security and emergency management issues from a policy perspective. The certificate addresses issues of homeland security strategy, policy design, planning, operations, managing across and among networks, and implementation
Academic Resources on Developing and Delivering Effective Presentations
Here is a compilation of Virginia Tech and online resources that can provide you with some tips on giving great presentations.
RESOURCES THROUGH VIRGINIA TECH CAMPUS
The Comm Lab located in the Newman Library at Virginia Tech/ Blacksburg Campus
The mission of the organization is to provide Virginia Tech students and faculty members with access to constructive feedback and practical resources for improving oral presentations. Students can gain valuable presentation-related insight and develop the necessary toolsets to become successful speakers. The Comm Lab may be available for off-campus students through google hangouts. Please inquire with the staff for their availability. Students have to make appointments online, which is the best way to set up appointments. The coaches are considered experts in public speaking. They will go through your Powerpoint presentation with you to make sure that you are meeting the professor’s objectives in your presentation.
Online Learning and Collaboration Services (Lynda.com; Software Tutorial and Training)
Lynda.com is your one stop shop for online tutorials and training in a variety of software suites and programs. Access is free to current Virginia Tech students, faculty, and staff. Once you are at the website, sign in via your PID to access the materials. After you have entered the site, type in the skills you would like to learn (e.g. giving great presentations)
Improving Presentation Skills of PhD Students (By Susanne Ulm, Next Scientist)
Presentation Skills (Joel Bowman, Ph.D., West Michigan University)
Preparing an Oral Presentation (By Jeff Radel, Ph.D., University of Kansas Medical Center)
Ten Simple Rules for Making Good Oral Presentations (University of Nebraska-Lincoln)
Oral Presentation and PowerPoint (compiled by Joe Schall, Penn State)
Adapted from Style for Students (https://www.e-education.psu.edu/styleforstudents) by Joe Schall is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/) via The Pennsylvania State University.
Why Bad Presentation Happen to Good Causes (Online Book by Andy Goodman)
YOU TUBE VIDEO RESOURCES
Public Speaking and Giving Presentation (By Scott Berkun, Author of the “Confessions of a Public Speaker”)
Giving Effective Presentations (By Lisa G. Bullard, Ph.D., North Carolina State University)
Presentation 101 for Graduate Students (By J. Paul Robinson, Ph.D., Purdue University)
Application Deadlines for All Campuses
For Fall admission, the deadline is May 1st.
For Spring Admission the deadline is November 1st.
INTERNATIONAL STUDENT DEADLINES
For Fall admission, the deadline is April 1st.
For Spring admission, the deadline is September 1st.
Tuition & Fees
The Bursar’s Office
maintains complete information about Virginia Tech tuition and fees for in-state and out-of-state residents.
For all other information about admissions and financial aid, please visit the graduate school admissions
Application and Fee. File an application with the graduate school online here
and pay the nonrefundable application fee, which is currently $75.
Want more help with filing the application? See the graduate school’s help page.
Transcripts. Have two official copies of undergraduate and/or graduate study transcripts sent directly to the graduate school from universities and colleges previously attended. VT applicants an simply request from the registrar.
Personal Statement of Purpose. As part of the online application process, provide a personal statement in which you (a) describe previous employment experiences and (b) discuss thoughtfully your future career plans. The statement should express how the Center’s curriculum for which you are applying will assist you in achieving your future career goals.
Resume. As part of the online application process, provide a professional resume.
Test Scores. Applicants for the Ph.D. program must provide scores on a recognized aptitude test. The educational testing service will send the scores directly to the graduate school, upon request. The aptitude test scores are optional for MPA applicants. International students may be required to take TOEFL.
Letters of Recommendation/Reference Forms. As part of the online application, all applicants should arrange for submission of three (3) persons to provide a letters of recommendation. Once submitted, each reference is sent an electronic form to complete. Preferably the applicant’s references should include a mix of former professors and others who know the applicant professionally, such as employment supervisors or others who have had an opportunity to observe the applicant in a professional capacity. It is especially important that applicants to the Ph.D. program provide at least two letters or forms from former college or university teachers.
Paper Applications. If you are unable or choose not to apply online, you may download the application form for US and Permanent Resident Students
or for International Students
Submission. ALL PAPER APPLICANTS, including Northern Virginia and Richmond campuses, please send application materials including: application and fee, personal statement of purpose, resume, and letters of recommendation/reference forms directly to the Graduate School. Transcripts and test scores should be sent from the issuing authority to the same address.
Virginia Tech Graduate School (0325)
Graduate Life Center at Donaldson Brown
Blacksburg, Virginia 24061
To confirm that your application materials are complete please contact:
Center for Public Administration and Policy
Phone: (540) 231-5133
VT CPAP Contacts
Laura French, Office Manager (Blacksburg)
(540) 231-5133 | email@example.com
Myriam Lechuga, Student Coordinator (Alexandria and Richmond)
(703) 706-8111 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Joe Rees, Faculty Coordinator (Richmond)
(540) 250-5632 | email@example.com
VT CPAP Locations
104 Draper Rd. Blacksburg, VA 24061
Mail Code: 0520
1021 Prince Street Alexandria, VA 22314
2810 N Parham Rd. Richmond, VA 23294