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SPPA ALUMNI IN ACTION
  • Alex Greer
    M.S. and B.A. '15 - Experience in quick response fieldwork, teaching emergency management.
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  • Andrew Haines
    MPA '03 – An accomplished local governmental leader and elected official.
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  • Chunjing Liu
    M.S. '14 – On the front lines of marine disaster mitigation through effective policy planning in China.
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  • Cimone Philpotts
    MPA '13 - Experience in assistantships and Legislative Fellows supports career growth assisting legislators.
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  • Gwen Angalet
    Ph.D. '00 - Ensuring programmatic and research opportunities for the promotion of children's health.
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  • Hira Rashid
    M.A. '15 – Fulbright scholar now in the Ph.D. program studying global health economics and urbanization.
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  • Hsien-Ho (Ray) Chang
    Ph.D. '15 - Utilizing his knowledge of disaster science to educate students on fire and emergency management.
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  • James B. Goetschius
    Ph.D. '14 - Serves in the U.S. Army improving health care facilities in the eastern United States.
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  • Jenna Bucsak
    B.A. and MPA '14 - Provides support for legislative and external affairs.
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  • John Carney
    MPA '86 – Newly elected Governor of the State of Delaware
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  • Kelsey Edmond
    M.S. '14 - OCL program prepared her for success in the MPA program in pursuit of an interdisciplinary career.
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  • Lindsey Interlante
    MPA '07 - Advocates for enriched, hands-on learning experiences at higher education institutions.
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  • Mark Rucci
    B.A. and MPA '15 – Continuing his public policy education internationally.
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  • Meredith Rubin
    B.A. '11 - Practicing leadership and collaboration in the financial services sector.
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  • Paige Gugerty
    B.A. '15 - Coordinating electronic connections bewteen healthcare providers and resources.
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  • Paul Ruiz
    B.A. and M.A. '13 - Advocating for alternative fuels and reducing America's depencdence on oil.
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  • Stephanie Ottino
    B.S. '11 - Executing leadership skills in higher education.
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  • Tom DeWire
    MPA '04 - Developing strategies for education systems to improve student achievement.
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  • Yuliya Brel
    M.A. '15 - Continuing her public policy education and assisting with research at the University of Delaware.
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  • Megan Wakelee
    B.S. '11 - Executing leadership in a corporate setting.
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  • Zack Adinoff
    M.S. '13 - Experience in coordinating public safety, logistics, planning, and general disaster continuity.
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  • Jissell Martinez
    MPA '10 - Manages fiscal affairs and serves as a liaison for the Dept of Languages, Literatures and Cultures
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  • Scott Beale
    MPA '07 - Successful nonprofit entrepreneur with experience in diplomacy and national politics.
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  • Matthew Garlipp
    B.A. '13 - Measuring perfomance and running analyses for a federal government agency.
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  • Merritt Burke IV
    MPA '98 - Various experiences in town management and community involvement.
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  • Ryan Burke
    Ph.D. '15 - Vast experience with military strategy and conducting military research.
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  • Allison Becker
    B.A. '13 and M.A. '15 - Experienced and published media policy researcher.
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  • Serita Porter
    M.A. '15 - Continuing her behavioral health education at the University of Delaware.
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  • Kirsten Jones
    M.A. '16 - Contributing to policies that strengthen transportation and trade in New York and New Jersey.e
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  • Elizabeth Burland
    M.A. '15 - Studying for a doctoral degree in Sociology and Public Policy at the University of Michigan.
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  • Elizabeth Lockman
    M.A. '15 - Education policy and equity in the urban landscape; improving advocacy efforts in Wilmington.
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  • Thomas Martin
    Ph.D. '14 - Directing the M.S. in Health Informatics program in the College of Public Health at Temple Univ.
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  • Angela Gladwell
    M.A. ’98 – Instrumental in environmental planning and federal emergency management decision making.
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  • Mark D. Stevens
    MPA '09 – Integral in the leadership and financial management of federal agencies.
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  • Courtney Mogavero
    B.S. '12 – Translating leadership education into a successful early career path in major tech corporations.
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  • Melanie Ross Levin
    B.A. and MPA '05 – Developing education and advocacy campaigns on public policy relating to women's issues.
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  • Dená Brummer
    MPA '05 – Successful private sector business partner drawing upon public sector experiences.
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  • Eric Johnson
    Ph.D. '03 – Revitalizing a community through the application of theory and practical experience.
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  • David Rudder
    Ph.D. '03 – Practicing effective leadership to academic programs that promote service to the community.
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  • Erin Kennedy
    MPA '06 – Drives health care organizations towards improving quality of patient care and clinical outcomes.
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  • Tom Friedman
    MPA '07 – Manages government relations, strategic & financial plan, and policy analysis for State Health Plan.
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  • Mike Morton
    MPA '86 – Oversees budgetary analysis and legislative information systems for the Delaware General Assembly.
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  • Jonathan Kirch
    MPA '07 – Advocating for public policy that promotes better health for all Americans.
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  • Albert Shields
    MPA '07 – Developing strategies to best communicate Governor Carney's positions on diverse policy issues.
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  • Kim Gomes
    MPA '04 – Strategically lobbying for client interests on a number of policy issues.
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  • Erika Farris
    M.A. '09 – Developing policies to better manage water drainage and promote environmental sustainability.
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  • Mike Fortner
    MPA '02 – Overseeing city planning for housing, land use, economic development, and transportation.
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  • Emily Gonce
    MPA '02 – Leading lobbying efforts to show members of Congress the value of life insurance to constituents.
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  • Bill Clark
    MPA '03 – Supervising a team of consultants to support projects for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
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  • Anastasia Kuzmina
    MPA '02 – Supporting two general managers with product and employee management in 14 countries.
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  • Barrett Edwards
    MPA '06 – Assisting municipalities with legal issues including planning, human resources, and finance.
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MPA Program Specializations

Concentrate your coursework in career-relevant areas
Master of Public Administration MPA students may specialize in areas that will help prepare them for successful careers.

Students may choose from one of the following specialization areas:

Public Policy & Management
Nonprofit & Community Leadership
Emergency Management
Student-Designed Specialization

In addition to the MPA core requirements, students are required to complete at least 6 credit hours of coursework in their chosen area of specialization. Course availability varies by semester, and your selections should be made in consultation with your academic advisor.

Public Policy & Management

The Public Policy & Management MPA specialization prepares you for managerial and analyst positions in all levels and areas of public-sector organizations. This fits students seeking to prepare for administrative positions with federal agencies or local/state departments, including advancing to decision-making positions within those organizations, and provides coursework in a variety of management, analytical, fiscal, and technology skills.

This specialization prepares leaders for careers in all aspects of public service, but with particular emphasis on governmental operations, community development, analysis of critical policies areas (transportation, planning, environment, health, education, etc.) as well as the management of federal, state and local agencies. 

Research and Public Service Center Affiliation(s)

Students selecting the Public Policy & Management specialization are often affiliated with the Institute for Public Administration (IPA), the Center for Community Research and Service (CCRS), or other centers affiliated with SPPA.

Specialization Courses

The 3-credit ‘threshold course’ is UAPP701: Public Policy. Students in the Public Policy & Management specialization also take at least 3 additional credits from other recommended courses. 

Nonprofit & Community Leadership

The Nonprofit & Community Leadership MPA specialization prepares you for leadership roles with institutions working in the areas of local and community-based economic development, housing, poverty, urban and neighborhood planning, and governance, as well as for roles as a manager or administrator for nonprofit organizations.

This specialization meets the needs of a growing segment of graduate students seeking careers in public service, but not necessarily in a government-based organization. Such career options could include nonprofit advocacy, fundraising/development, board governance, and organization communications.

Research Center Affiliation


The Nonprofit & Community Leadership specialization is supported by the active research and public service programs of several centers including the Center for Community Research and Service (CCRS), the Center for Disability Studies (CDS), and numerous regional nonprofit and community organizations.  

Specialization Courses

The 3-credit ‘threshold course’ is UAPP672: Nonprofit Organizations: Scope, Frameworks and Dynamics, and students also must take at least 3 additional credits from recommended courses. 

Emergency Management

The Emergency Management MPA specialization prepares you to serve as a disaster professional, supporting governments, communities, and public organizations in the preparation, response, recovery, and mitigation of emergency situations.

This specialization opens up career options that intertwine disaster preparedness planning with agency management and operations. It may also be a good choice for those contemplating careers in the fields of public safety or disaster research.

Research Center Affiliation

Students selecting the Emergency Management specialization may be affiliated with the Disaster Research Center (DRC) or other interdisciplinary research centers.

Specialization Courses

The 3-credit ‘threshold course’ is DISA650: Overview of Disaster Science and Management, and students also take at least 3 additional credits from recommended courses.

Student-Designed Specialization

The Student-Designed specialization allows students, with the approval of their faculty advisor and the MPA director, to formulate a specialized program of study related to their unique academic and professional interests. Proposals for a student designed specialization must demonstrate a clear and relevant relationship to the field of public administration/management, organizational leadership, public policy, or advocacy in the public interest and must identify at least 6 ​credits of specialization-related graduate course work.

This specialization prepares students for a wide array of career options and may be a good choice for those contemplating continuing their graduate education beyond the master's level. Examples could range from sports management or health promotion to children's advocacy or environmental policy.

Research Center Affiliation

Students selecting the Student Designed specialization may be affiliated with research centers or institutes within SPPA, other centers across the University, or relevant off-campus organizations.

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Master of Public Administration Program Specializations and Concentrations at the School of Public Policy and Administration at University of Delaware.
MPA concentrations, MPA specializations, Disaster MPA, Emergency Management grad degree, Emergency MPA, Nonprofit Management degree, public policy MPA
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  • School of Public Policy & Administration
  • 184 Graham Hall
  • University of Delaware
  • Newark, DE 19716, USA
  • Phone: 302-831-1687
  • sppa@udel.edu
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