Public Administration Program

What is public administration?

Public administration is a challenging and rewarding career in public service.  Public administrators work to help solve demanding public problems and serve the public primarily through government agencies and non-profit organizations.  Public administrators perform a wide range of functions such as developing policy and legislation; implementing policies; managing programs, people, and budgets; and providing vital daily services for the well-being of citizens.

Is public administration right for me?

Are you interested in how the government works?  Do you want to influence the direction of your community, state, or country? Are you interested in public policies such as education, criminal justice, economic development, or the environment? Do you want to make a difference in the lives of people? Do you want a challenging and rewarding career? Do you want a degree that will prepare you for many careers in a wide variety of organizations and institutions?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, public administration is the program for you!

What is the career outlook for public administration majors?

Public administration offers many career opportunities including those in government agencies at all levels, in non-profit organizations both domestically and abroad, in higher education, as aides and analysts for elected officials, in hospitals and other health-related organizations, and in private sector companies that contract with governments.  These opportunities provide good pay and benefits, numerous choices of where to work in the U.S. and around the world, and resources for further training and education.  Job opportunities abound as agency directors, program managers, policy analysts, legislative or congressional aides, budget analysts, grant writers, economic developers, city managers, urban planners, research analysts, law enforcement officers, human resource analysts, healthcare administrators, and as attorneys in government and non-profit agencies.


Bachelor of Public Administration (BPA) Degree Program

Starting in Fall 2022, students may choose to pursue the Bachelor of Public Administration (BPA) degree in the Department of Government, Public Service, and International Studies at UCA.  The BPA prepares students for careers in government agencies (federal , state, and local) and non-profit organizations. The program includes a 36-credit hour major offering courses in state government and politics, local government and politics, intergovernmental relations, public management, public policy, program evaluation, government budgeting, and a variety of substantive policy topics ( education policy, environmental policy, and community and economic development policy). The program also requires a six-credit hour internship in a government or non-profit organization and a one-credit hour course introducing students to the profession of public service.

Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Bachelor of Science (BS) in Public Administration

Students who declared a major in Public Administration (BA in Public Administration or BS in Public Administration) prior to Fall 2022 will be permitted to complete their respective BA or BS degree programs.  Here is the checklist for students who declared the major in Public Administration (36 credit hours) prior to Fall 2022.

Minor in Public Administration

Students may choose to minor in Public Administration (24 credit hours), including completion of 15 credit hours of core required PSCI and PADM courses, six credit hours at the 3000 level or above from the Public and Non-Profit Management issue area, and three credit hours at the 3000 level or above from the Policy Analysis and Advocacy issue area.

More information regarding the degree programs and courses offered by the Department of Government, Public Service, and International Studies can be found in the UCA Undergraduate Bulletin.



Dr. Kim Hoffman, Director
Public Administration Program
University of Central Arkansas
Conway, Arkansas 72035
Phone:  501-450-3412