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Public Administrators


Description

Public administrators organize and control the day-to-day functions of an office or organization in the public sector. They are truly the supporting backbone of an organization and without them most public institutions would be in complete disarray. The duties and functions of a public administrator vary greatly from one organization to the next. Generally, it is up to the public administrator to plan and direct the development, implementation and evalutaion of government policies, research and programs within the sector which they are working. Public administrators may also perform some administrative tasks ranging from routine office functions to holding positions as managers or directors of specific departments. Depending on one's level of experience and position title, their duties and responsibilities will fluctuate.

In the last decade, the role of the public administrator has drastically changed and evolved due to technological advancements. Computers have replaced and simplified some of the once traditional tasks of the administrator such as paper filing, operating dictaphones and using a typewriter. Functions such as training new staff members, conducting research on the Internet and public policy and operating new office programs such as multimedia presentations are good examples of some newer administrative duties. As managers or director, public administrators may find themselves creating and executing public policy.

They perform a variety of administrative duties such as conducting research and providing information to managers and clients. They are also responsible for directing and advising researchers, consultants and program officers as well as planning and administering budgets and organizing and directing others in the implementation of programs. Many public administrators specialize in an area such as dispute resolution, indigenous government, information management or public sector economics and finance.
 
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Liberty University

Liberty University provides a world-class education with a solid Christian foundation, equipping men and women with the values, knowledge, and skills essential for success in every aspect of life.

Programs Offered:
  • CERT: Public Administration
  • CERT: Business Administration
  • AA in Business
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  Interests and Skills  
Public administrators will have good oral and written communication skills because they speak with many people on the phone and constantly deal with different people's problems and questions. They have good interpersonal skills, excellent organizational and time management skills, and have the ability to work independently or as part of a team. They should also enjoy using computer applications, and get comfortable with word processing and spreadsheets. Skills with numbers, bookkeeping and political science can also be an added skill to help finding a job, and public administrators have the ability to compile and organize information clearly and logically.
 

  Typical Tasks  
  • Participate in the development of policies
  • Organize department units and establish operating procedures
  • Direct and advise researchers, consultants and program officers
  • Plan, administer and control budgets for research and administration, support services, and supplies
  • Organize and direct committees in planning, managing and evaluating services and programs
  • Prepare meeting agendas, attend meetings, and record and transcribe minutes
  • Draft correspondence and reports
  • Develop and maintain a records management system, including classifying and coding electronic and hardcopy files
  • Public administrators almost always work in office environments. A standard, 40-hour workweek is the norm for public administrators unless they work part-time. In some cases, longer hours may be required to meet deadlines. A typical day often involves sitting for long periods of time in front of a computer. Public administrative work can lend itself to alternative or flexible working arrangements, such as part-time work or telecommuting.

  Workplaces, Employers and Industries  
  • Public administrators are employed in every sector of the public working world. They usually work in offices, in schools, hospitals, government services and medical and social services. Any type of public policy or public records work, including estate management, will be administered by a public administrator.

  Long Term Career Potential  
With experience, public administrators can move into managerial positions within their public organization. The organization and specialty area a public administrator works for will really help determine the upward mobility of an administrator. Unfortunately, those looking for advancement in other public agencies will find it hard to move forwards unless they want to acquire another similar administrative position.

A futuristic trend in the public administrative field is to become a virtual assistant and work independently on the Internet performing administrative duties for contract. This allows public administrators to leave the conventional office setting and become their own boss, setting their own hours and billing clients hourly for their work.
 

  Educational Paths  
For those wanting to work as public administrators a bachelor's degree or a Master of Public Administration is required to work in this field. Many specialized public administrators also have related postsecondary educations. For instance, many public administrators have backgrounds in political science and public policy analysis.
 

Sources:
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, 2002, http://www.bls.gov/oes/2002/oes_nat.htm

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Northcentral University  Online

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Designed with the needs of working adult students in mind, South University, Online Programs is built on the similar curriculum offered at South University's campus locations. As a student at South University, Online Programs you will receive the same quality instruction, variety of learning options and level of service found at the campus locations.

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Liberty University  Online

Liberty University provides a world-class education with a solid Christian foundation, equipping men and women with the values, knowledge, and skills essential for success in every aspect of life.

Programs Offered:
  • CERT: Public Administration
  • CERT: Business Administration
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  • Lynchburg, VA

 
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Earn your Master's degree online from Norwich University.
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California University of Pennsylvania  Online

Study online with California University of Pennsylvania.

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Study online with University of Maryland at College Park.

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Iowa Wesleyan University  Online

Iowa Wesleyan University is a transformational learning community whose passion is to educate, empower and inspire students to lead meaningful lives and careers.

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Villanova University  Online
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