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This major applies the principles of good business—management, problem-solving, decision-making, organization, and leadership—to the public sector. Public Administration careers can exist on a state or local level, in federal agencies (such as housing, law enforcement, and labor relations) and non-profit organizations (like health care and social services).

Public Administration is a hybrid field that arose from the close relationship between government and business. Politics and public policy are equally important in this field. As a Public Administration major, you’ll see how laws and regulations have affected society, and how those laws are either problematic or beneficial, and sometimes a combination of both. You’ll learn about current problems with the law, and how those laws might be changed. You’ll gain an understanding of social problems, and see how people respond to changes. You might choose to work as a city planner, a tax administrator, or an insurance regulator, among many other options.

Your program might offer areas of special interest to Public Administration such as urban studies, criminal justice, or public opinion. No matter where your interests lie, you’ll be expected to have a good knowledge of government, an interest in business, and a passion for serving others effectively.


  • Accounting for Governmental Organizations

  • Administrative Law

  • Applied Research Methods

  • Contemporary Government and Business Relations

  • Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations

  • Human Resource Management

  • Mathematics for Decision-Making

  • Public Budgeting

  • Public Finance

  • Public Policy Analysis

  • State and Local Government

  • Urban and Regional Economic Analysis


Communication skills are vital to any administration major, so make an effort to take classes in English, languages, writing, and other humanities subjects. Computer skills are also important, so take classes in computer science if they’re offered at your school. Math courses will also help in making you an effective administrator. And learn how to type—you’ll be glad you did.