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Hey MPA graduate, here’s 3 careers you didn’t know you qualify for

Working hard in school pays off with these business opportunities

A Master of Public Administration degree is one of the most popular graduate degrees today. There are several reasons why the MPA degree is so popular, one of which is the increase in demand for professionals in the public service sector. Non-profit organizations and even corporations are also looking for MPA graduates to support their programs, as the key management, organizational and strategy skills used through the course are being recognized more and more across a wider range of industries, especially in the public sector.

Due to this, the range of MPA courses available has also increased due to the higher demand, meaning that these jobs and the means to pursue these careers are more readily available. Some online courses have even made it possible for people already working full time jobs to access the course without having to sacrifice their current job positions.

While there are a lot of interesting careers to get into when you are an MPA graduate, some of them aren’t as popular as the rest. Here are the three careers you didn’t know you could get in to when you’re an MPA grad.

Surprising MPA graduate career opportunities:

1. Public administration consultant

Aside from working for the government, MPA graduates can also assume the role of consultant and pursue a career in the private sector. Working as a public administration consultant gives you the best of both worlds. You will still be working closely with local government and communities, advising them on better ways to achieve their goals and influencing change in the process.

On the other hand, you are actually employed by private companies that assist local and federal government entities in different way. These companies receive contracts from different departments, giving you the opportunity to work with entities such as the Department of Justice and state government offices.

Some online MPA degree courses, from places like, offer flexible courses for so that people already working in higher up administration jobs can further their careers through education, whilst staying committed to their job. If you’re already in an administration job and wish to progress to this role, this could be an ideal option, as you won’t have to sacrifice your current salary or take time out to complete the course.

As a consultant, your main task is recommending ways for government entities to achieve their objectives, stay within their performance indexes, and meet budget requirements in the process. It is also your duty to review policies and check to make sure programs are executed properly.

2. Manager in journalism

Pay attention to news and the organizations behind them, and you will quickly notice immense coverage of political activities, public policies, and governments in general. As an MPA degree holder, you have the necessary knowledge and skills to be a senior manager in the field of journalism, especially in news organizations.

Working as a senior manager in journalism is very rewarding. According to the latest studies by independent auditors and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, senior managers in journalism bring in an average of $90,000 in annual salary.

As a manager, your main task is ensuring proper coverage of policies and government activities. This includes conducting background research, understanding new regulations, and finding the best ways to convey these new policies to the public. It is also your job to review the impacts of new policies and direct journalists and field reporters accordingly.

3. Communications specialist

With an MPA degree, you also have the opportunity to help non-profit organizations – and government entities, in some cases – communicate their programs and their causes. This is a strategic position that is not only rewarding, but also very exciting.

You’ll be dealing with things such as online and offline marketing campaigns, public relations, and branding in general. This job is very appropriate for more organized individuals, as it can become quite busy as you need you often need to plan, deliver and communicate key marketing campaigns. As non-profit organizations face more challenges in helping communities, it is your job to convey the right messages and get the support of more people.

The pay for this kind of job can rage a lot depending on what specific company organization you are working for, but often lies around $50,000 to $70,000. Obviously, depending on your role, rank, and working hours this can change, but if it’s something you’re passionate about pursuing a career as a communications specialist can be very rewarding.

MPA graduate careers: A few last words

All three of these careers are incredible and they are yours to pursue once you complete your MPA course. Now that finding alternative options for MPA courses, such as online options, even people with full time jobs who wish to progress further in their careers can too can find more ways to help local communities and pursue a career that aligns well with your passion.

8 thoughts on “Hey MPA graduate, here’s 3 careers you didn’t know you qualify for”

  1. I graduated the University of Southern California with an MPA. I entered the program expecting to find a cohort of individuals working in the field of public administration and government. I was shocked to find the majority of program participants were from the non-profit field. While I didn’t first recognize this link, the reality is those students brought some of the most valuable connections of principle and theory. There is a direct and meaningful link between these fields. Therefore, I would add that MPA grads should also consider work in the philanthropy field as well.

  2. Thank you for a very informative post Christy – I had no idea an MPA could open so many doors. Great information, especially for people starting their career and trying to decide what path to take. Thank you, I’ll pass that on to my nieces and nephews!

  3. In today’s world of changing needs and employment opportunities, studying a curriculum that provides greater opportunities is a must. As the world modernizes, we can’t rely on previous roads to employment because many of these jobs are being replaced with I.A. Discovering areas of interest in life helps one pursue educational needed required to qualify for new types of careers.

    You lay this out beautifully in this post.

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