Advice

Activism and Public Service May Call Some to Advanced Education

Written by Frank Kremer

 

With the currently shifting political climates, it’s no surprise that some feel called to careers with the potential for social change. MadameNoire reported on this trend in 2015, suggesting a multiplicity of qualities ideal for someone pursuing activism as a vocation. Both ability to recognize trends, as well as keep track of multiple priorities simultaneously, are important. Additionally, strong organization and leadership skills are vital for any activist. Those seeking this direction may opt for more education, and many possibilities exist for the professional desiring to change the world.

MPA Degrees May Be Ideal for Nonprofit Work

Besides a desire to make things better through legal or other means, those aiming for a career in activism must also strive to understand deeper issues. This might require further education focusing on topics such as leadership, public policy and government, as well as organizational and human behavior. For these individuals, Master of Public Administration degree could be an ideal answer. Programs such as the one from the University of Southern California expand on these subjects and more, keeping an eye on both classic principles and modern developments. You can click here if you are interested in USC’s online MPA degree option.

Besides acquiring more skills and knowledge, MPA candidates receive other advantages. The Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management points out that it is a terminal degree, which means no additional schooling is required. Additionally, learners might be more easily able to find student financial aid, enjoy classes with a low teacher/student ratio and locate internship opportunities. Finally, the MPA’s scope is rather broad, which means that graduates may find work in government, private sector consulting, grassroots advocacy organizations and elsewhere.

Political Management Offers Different Opportunities

Depending on your career goals, you might seek a more extensive focus on politics in your schooling instead. Wikipedia reports that political management began primarily as a discipline focusing on election strategy, with political managers and consultants emerging as an alternative to the past practice of using public relations firms to shore up political campaigns. However, it has now expanded into a broader field encompassing a wider range of topics.

Programs such as the Master in Political Management from the George Washington University differ in focus from political science curricula. It’s true that in many cases, political management courses cover some of the same subject matter as political science classes, including elections, lobbying, advocacy, policy implementation and social movements. However, political management curricula tend to concentrate on the practical aspects as opposed to the theoretical. Thus, those interested in a career affecting positive change through the political process may want to consider this type of degree.

Make a Career Out of Doing Good

Additional schooling could potentially open doors for those interested in pursuing careers in activism, public policy or other related fields. The number of options might seem overwhelming, but narrowing your focus on specific possibilities may help you choose the best curriculum to accomplish your goals. Depending on where you’d like to apply your talents, either a Master of Public Administration program and or a graduate course of study in political management may help you prepare for a career that allows you to help benefit the greater good.

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Frank Kremer

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