Celebrating 50 Years of Impact


This spring we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the School of Public Policy’s (SPP) flagship Master of Public Administration (MPA) program. The impact of the MPA program in preparing public and nonprofit leaders in the State of Connecticut is evidenced by the the impact and contributions of more than 1,000 graduates of the program. For over 50 years, MPA alumni have been leading public and nonprofit organizations across the State and the nation. The MPA continues to command high rankings nationally, and it continues to be the only NASPAA Accredited program in Connecticut. Currently the UConn MPA is ranked second to Harvard’s Kennedy School in the New England region, and its public financial management specialization is top-ten in the nation and second to none in New England. Moving forward we need to think of the momentum that will take us into the next 50 years.

As a destination for public service education in the State of Connecticut, we now serve traditional students seeking public service careers, public service professionals and executives seeking career advancement, and public and nonprofit professionals seeking continuing education opportunities. Our enrollment and graduation numbers continue to increase – nearly doubling in the last six years. In recent years, we have expanded our offerings to meet demand and include degrees in Public Policy and Survey Research. Our executive track Saturday cohorts were introduced a few years ago, and were immediately successful. In recent years, our footprint expanded to professional development opportunities through the Public Service Executive Leadership Collaborative (PSELC), Encore!Connecticut, and Greater New Haven Nonprofit Management Cohort: A Program for Emerging Leaders of Color.

Our faculty research is more impactful than ever. Amazing faculty have retired, and our enrollment and alumni and faculty impact have helped us grow with exceptional new colleagues. These colleagues will lead us into the next 50 years. Our faculty research focuses on education equity, gun violence prevention, digital equity, health and environment, gender equity, and public finance to name only a few of the areas. Employers are actively seeking our students as interns and permanent employees. They are achieving job outcomes rooted in leveraging our network and an MPA brand that is second to none in the State. All of these things are indicators that the next 50 years will be even more impactful than the past 50.

This spring we have a number of events planned to celebrate the MPA’s 50th Anniversary with a Gala at the center. We hope you can join us on Saturday, April 22 from 5:00pm-9:30pm at the Chrysalis Center in Hartford. The evening will include a cocktail hour, dinner, commemoration of 50 years of impact and a crowdfunding campaign to raise funding for student awards. Additional details are forthcoming!

We would have much less to celebrate without the great impact of our faculty, alumni, and students. On behalf of my faculty and staff colleagues, I want to thank everyone of them for putting us on the map and for giving us a reason to celebrate the past 50 years.

Mohamad G. Alkadry (SPP Director & Professor)