Tony Allen, a UD alumnus and trustee, and communications executive with Bank of America, addresses the SPPA career conference. [Photo by Ambre Alexander]
Established in 1961 with funding from the Ford Foundation, SPPA became one of the first interdisciplinary university programs in the nation to focus on the challenges of urban America and has since established itself as a first class program focused on integrating academic excellence with professional experience. "A half-century later, we have emerged as a globally recognized, comprehensive school of public affairs, with nationally-ranked academic programs and research and public service programs that impact the public and nonprofit sectors at all levels," says SPPA director Maria Aristigueta.
Speaking at the March 19 reception, UD President Patrick Harker praised the School's contributions to UD and the public. "When we talk about UD's service mission--when we talk about 'Citizen University'--we're talking about the School of Public Policy and Administration," said Harker. "It's at the heart of service scholarship--research applied to public policy and the public good."
The Careers in Public and Community Service conference brought together notable leaders and alumni from government, public policy and the public and private sectors, with the goal of providing students across UD with strategies for gaining a competitive edge in their employment search while highlighting the diverse array of public service careers.
With more than 300 in attendance, the conference was "our collective gift back to students, alumni, partners and friends," comments Aristigueta. In the future, the School plans to continue the momentum from this year's conference with annual career conferences and job fairs in which current students can meet with potential employers in the public sector.
"As we celebrate a historic milestone, we are also rededicated to our longstanding mission of benefiting the communities we serve," says Aristigueta.