Public Administration

If you are interested in social justice, public ethics and good governance, then a degree in Public Administration may be for you. Studies in Public Administration can prepare you with the skills and expertise to begin a successful career in any of the public, private and non-profit sectors.

Career Options in Public Administration

This list is not exhaustive but provides an idea of the options graduates have and what they have gone on to do. Some options are more directly associated with a Public Administration degree than others.

  • Activist
  • Business Administrator
  • Community Worker
  • Editor
  • Event Coordinator
  • Executive Assistant
  • Foreign Correspondent
  • Foreign Service Officer
  • Fundraiser
  • Government Administrator
  • Government Relations Manager
  • Human Resource Specialist
  • Immigration Officer
  • Investment Strategist
  • Journalist
  • Labour Relations Specialist
  • Lawyer
  • Legal Secretary
  • Legislative Aid
  • Librarian
  • Lobbyist
  • Management Consultant
  • Marketing Specialist
  • Media Correspondent
  • Mediator
  • Non-profit Administrator
  • Paralegal
  • Police/Corrections Officer
  • Policy Advisor
  • Policy Researcher
  • Political Advisor
  • Politician
  • Population Studies Analyst
  • Professor
  • Public Affairs Consultant
  • Public Opinion Analyst
  • Public Policy Analyst
  • Public Policy Historian
  • Public Policy Researcher
  • Public Relations Consultant
  • Public Speaking Consultant
  • Purchasing Agent/Buyer
  • Real Estate Agent
  • Researcher
  • Speech Writer
  • Statistician
  • Stockbroker
  • Teacher
  • Translator
  • Urban Planner

Some of these career choices may require additional education or preparation in the form of graduate studies, experiential education or professional formative courses and exams. For a more in-depth description of some of the careers mentioned above visit Career Cruising (login information can be found on the home page of the Career Centre's online system) or the National Occupational Classification website.

Skills Developed through Studies in Public Administration

A background in Public Administration ensures that you develop the skills and mindset to tackle many different professional challenges.

Core Public Administration Skills

  • Comprehensive knowledge of Canadian politics and political institutions
  • An understanding of the interface between politics and policy-making through a range of contemporary perspectives and across disciplines including economics, law, political science, public administration, management and justice studies
  • A clear understanding of the theory and practice of government, including policy analysis, program evaluation and other public service functions

Communication, Data Gathering and Organizational Skills

  • The ability to present your thoughts clearly and intelligently in written statements
  • An ability to organize, understand and analyze new sources of information and to apply novel forms of technology or new information to different professional settings and tasks
  • Deduction of information from various sources and the ability to concentrate on relevant resources
  • An ability to prepare oral and written presentations and reports using current data and technology
  • The ability to learn new information and apply this to professional demands
  • The capacity to critically analyze problems, think creatively and make sound and well-reasoned decisions while considering different sides of each argument

Management and Teamwork

  • The ability to interpret and analyze information presented by peers and efficiently and constructively support or challenge their proposals, theories, ideas and reports in order to achieve a project's intended and successful end result
  • Logical thinking skills and the ability to lead and interact with a variety of people with different approaches and personal and professional backgrounds
  • The ability to debate, persuade, mediate and present your thoughts and opinions clearly to others, as well as the capacity to recognize and incorporate other potential solutions or applications to given problems
  • he capability to identify priorities and proper courses of action, to plan the execution of tasks and to determine and delegate responsibilities to group members to most effectively carry out projects

Professional Associations and Organizations

Knowing the industry and how to excel in it after receiving a degree are key elements of future success. University study sets up the building blocks you will need to develop and enhance your understanding and knowledge in your career. Being part of a professional organization or network and gaining further insight through training are excellent ways of increasing your knowledge of the field.