Wilkes University

Public Administration

Learn how to work with others with a public administration degree through Wilkes University.

Fascinated by the wheels of government?

Public administration is, at its core, applied political science. At Wilkes, its foundation is interdisciplinary, with courses drawn from political science, business and economics.

Students majoring in public administration most often find employment in all levels of government – federal, state and local – as well as non-profit and not-for-profit agencies in the United States and international non-governmental organizations. But the broad, practical training provided by the major will serve students interested in private sector, management positions in the United States or, if coupled with international studies, international corporations.

Most importantly, students receive instruction in small classes and are guided in their careers by faculty who are genuinely interested in their students’ success. Program faculty have a wealth of government experience from serving on a county election board, working in a legislative research agency and state representative, and serving on state commissions and municipal and county study projects.  

A major in public administration requires 120 hours. These include 43 hours in the University's general education requirements and 57 hours in public administration. As an interdisciplinary major, the 57 credits required comprise 36 in political science, 12 in business administration, and nine in economics. Students are required to participate in at least one, 3-credit internship, but they are strongly encouraged to do several to diversify their experience. Internships are available with Luzerne County, Pa., government and other municipal governments in the region, major cities in Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania state legislature and executive branch, and the federal government in Washington, D.C.  Other locations are possible depending upon student needs.

Students have the opportunity to participate in faculty research projects. Past projects involved books on campaigns and elections, voting laws, and the voting behavior of minority groups in the United States. Beginning in fall 2015, exceptional students may apply to the University’s honors program.

 Wilkes alumni who have gone to graduate school in public administration or public policy have attended Syracuse University, the University of Pittsburgh, University of Rochester, American University, Albany University, Villanova University, East Stroudsburg University and Marywood University.

They have worked for the Government Accountability Office, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, Neighborhood Works America (Washington, D.C.), Kingston borough government, the state legislature of New York, and Luzerne and Montgomery county government in Pennsylvania.