Students and Alumni

What Our Graduates Had To Say About The Program

“Through the faculty’s, students’, and Alumni/ae’s shared vision of success, Villanova’s MPA program is rapidly evolving into one of the country’s premier graduate programs for current and aspiring public sector leaders. By focusing on both innovative and proven theoretical and practical approaches to organizational leadership and management, graduates—the next generation of leaders—are well prepared to tackle the mounting challenges facing the public and nonprofit sectors. Moreover, the intimate nature of the program ensures that no one gets lost in the shuffle. We are all part of the MPA family and all help each other succeed. This unique feature sets Villanova apart from many other competing programs. I cannot overstate how influential this program has been on my career success thus far and how influential it will be well into the future. I enthusiastically recommend the program to any one who is truly passionate about public service, and to anyone who strives to take their career and the profession to the next level."

Chris Campbell, May 2010
Administrative Analyst
Boulder County, Colorado, Department Housing and Human Services

“Thanks to the Villanova MPA program's design, I was able to calibrate my family and professional needs and interests with the expectations of the program. On a daily basis, the coursework is relevant to whatever challenges you may face in your career. The courses are a checklist of the leadership qualities and skills sought after in a career dedicated to public service. The instructors are respected experts who set high standards that extend beyond the classroom.”

Jonathan Kassa, December 2009
Executive Director,
Security On Campus, Inc.

"Pursuing an MPA degree at Villanova presented me with the opportunity to learn from amazing faculty who are not only knowledgeable about their subject, but have a passion for it as well. Every faculty member made themselves available to the students, and offered practical advice and counsel in both the academic and career environments. Interaction with fellow students from diverse backgrounds and with varied interests also enriched my academic experience. The most rewarding aspect of my education at Villanova was that it presented me with a chance to learn more about myself, and how I can use this education to make a difference wherever my professional life takes me."

Carolyn McCreary, May 2008
Township Manager,
Plumstead Township

"My experience in the MPA program at Villanova has been invaluable. The mix of experienced academics and practitioners is the perfect balance for learning public administration theories and best practices. As a working professional it helped develop my skills and gave me the necessary tools to pursue my career goals. It also facilitated the establishment of strong networks with my peers. I commend the faculty of the MPA program for giving me such a positive experience!"

Rick Mellor, May 2008
Township Manager,
Lower Moreland Township

"Villanova's MPA program provides everything a graduate student could want - excellent faculty, a strong sense of community, preparation for the future, and a sincere investment in its students. Beyond my degree, I developed lifelong friendships with both my fellow students and the dynamic faculty. I encourage any potential graduate student to seriously consider attending Villanova's MPA program. As a proud alumni, I look forward to representing Villanova throughout my career."

Aaron Bibro, May 2007
Robinson Township, Allegheny County

"Choosing to pursue an MPA at Villanova was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Classes are taught by an extremely knowledgeable faculty who genuinely care about the success of students. While achieving a firm foundation in the discipline of public administration students are also given the freedom to tailor their learning to suit their individual needs. During my time at Villanova I was able to undertake a series of interesting internships which allowed me to gain practical understanding of the theories I was learning in class. I would thoroughly recommend the program to anyone who is interested in pursuing a career in public service."

"Villanova's MPA program was everything I hoped for and more. I chose Villanova's program for the range of elective courses that would meet my professional needs. The ability to focus course research in public health and obesity prevention gave me both a health and government background. The chance to work on research and evaluation projects, present at conferences and interact with professionals, were just a few of the opportunities available to me at Villanova. Faculty in Villanova's MPA program are extremely knowledgeable and some have decades of experience as practitioners. I would highly recommend the MPA program at Villanova to anyone interested in pursuing a Masters degree."

Robyn Ricketts, May 2006
Health and Physical Education Teacher
Central Dauphin County School District, PA

"Villanova's MPA program is top-notch! Not only does a student learn the foundations of the field of Public Administration, but he or she also learns how to link those theories pragmatically to one's working environment. This program caters to all students from the college graduate to the working professional. The faculty is top-rate and extremely helpful in guiding you on your career path. Overall, the program is spectacular and I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in reaching his or her career goals!"

Amanda Ostrander, May 2004
Assistant Manager
Borough of Swarthmore, PA

"The Villanova MPA program surpassed all of my expectations. Dr. Wheeland and the faculty were incredibly supportive. The classes were dynamic and the course topics were relevant for working professionals. It was such a positive experience, I am glad I chose Villanova."

Jennifer M. Doyle, May 2004
Manager of Adult Learning and Workforce Development
Honickman Learning Center and Comcast Technology

“I found the MPA program to be exactly what I was looking for, both academically and in preparation for a professional career. The program offers courses that challenge the students while prepare them for future careers. The program offers students many professional and valuable opportunities through the management internship program. I found the faculty to be one of the best parts of the program. I have never met a more dedicated group of individuals who truly want to see a student succeed. I believe the MPA program has prepared me quite well for my future career in government service. I would enthusiastically recommend the program to anyone who is interested in government or non-profit work.”

Ryan C. Heffernan, May 2004
Intelligence Operations Specialist, Counterterrorism Division
Federal Bureau of Investigation

"Earning my master's degree in public administration at Villanova University was a wonderful experience. The caring and professional faculty prepared me well for a future career of service. Interacting with quality students from diverse backgrounds challenged me and made the program even more rewarding."

Matthew J. McKenzie, May 2004
Manager, Field Service
Engineered Arresting Systems Corporation

"The MPA program provides graduate students with a well developed theoretical foundation of knowledge in many aspects of management and administration theory. Additionally, the program incorporates a practical internship that allows students to apply acquired knowledge to real-life situations. The courses offered in the MPA program are not only interesting, the information learned in each class can be easily used by managers or leaders of any type of organization. I recommend this program to anyone without hesitation."

Alexander Henderson, May 2004
Assistant Professor of Health Care and Public Administration
Long Island University

"During the MPA application process I met with Dr. Wheeland. We discussed career options. He told me about the Presidential Management Fellowship (PMF) program (United States Government) and encouraged me to apply. As fate would have it, two years later on the day of my graduation from Villanova I officially became a PMF."

J. Bryan Smith, December 2003
Director of Community Based Programs
Mental Health Association of Monmouth County

"Villanova's MPA program provides students with the real tools needed in government today: policy analysis, financial management and ethics to name a few. The professors are well versed in their field, committed to their students and public service. The class schedule is flexible, allowing me to work full time and attend class. I firmly believe that the concepts and skills learned in the MPA program enhance my everyday performance as well as my resume."

Christina Graff-Eckenroth, December 2002
Team Leader Workforce Development Specialist
US Department of Labor

"In class, it was explained that one enters graduate school with the technical expertise gained at the undergraduate level - for me, this was journalism. To acquire a Master of Public Administration was to add to that technical foundation a broad-based professional perspective on issues such as management, policy, ethics, statistics, decision-making, and community service. Villanova's MPA curriculum enables each student to master the field while focusing on areas of individual interest and the degree is wide enough to encompass career pursuits in government, non-profits and academia. Armed with my MPA, I continue to use the skills gained from a BS, and have the real opportunity to pursue a Ph.D. Is the MPA valuable? Exponentially."

Melanie Brady, September 2002
Founding Partner and Chief Executive Officer
The Cake and Pi Company

"The Villanova MPA program provides the right environment for anyone interested in public service. Valuable internships can be found that further your course work and future career goals. The faculty are very supportive and share many insights in the various fields of interest. The course work provides a solid foundation for any future public administrator by providing you with broad spectrum of knowledge. But beyond that, the size of the program allows for a great deal of sharing with fellow students and the faculty which makes Villanova unique. There is a real camaraderie that fosters a great academic environment. The friendships I have made during my time in the program have been invaluable. I recommend the Villanova MPA without hesitation."

William Martin, December 2001
Manager, Tredyffrin Township, PA

"I cannot say enough about the positive experience I had in the Villanova MPA program. Opportunities to challenge myself were always readily available, and I was aided by a supportive faculty and a collaborative learning environment. The academic program provided a solid background in public management that is relevant in any field. But not only did the program focus on the essential skills, the associated theory, and the interwoven history of public management, it taught me to consider the overarching importance of ethics in relating to others in the professional realm. These elements I was able to apply to my invaluable internship experience, and will be able to utilize throughout my career."

Meredith Fretz, December 2001
Assistant Township Manager
Middletown Township, PA

"Villanova's MPA program prepared me for my professional career by helping me build a foundation of knowledge in the theory, history, and practices of public administration, and enhanced that foundation through the real-world applications of my internship."

Gina Delmont, May 2001
Operations Manager
Friends of High School Park

"Villanova’s MPA program has been an enriching and rewarding experience for me professionally and personally. My internships coupled with the broad and challenging curriculum has provided me with the tools necessary to succeed in the complex world of local public administration."

Bradley Boyd, May 2000
Independent Contractor
Bradley M. Boyd Educational Services

"The MPA program at Villanova is perfect for any stage of your academic career - be it straight-out of undergraduate school, a few years out of college, or mid-career. I liked being in a program where everyone knew each other and the faculty wanted to see you succeed academically and professionally."

Veracelle Vega, May 1999
Senior Director, Corporate Human Resources
News Corporation

"I learned a great deal in the MPA program. I felt challenged and I have a real sense of accomplishment by completing a masters program in an area I have real interest in. I am a better person for this experience and thankful for having had the opportunity."

Kevin Wall, May 1999
US Marine Corp

"The public administration program thoroughly challenged and excited me. It is both intellectually rigorous and provides practical training. I feel tremendously well-prepared to enter into a Ph.D. program in public administration. In addition, the program provided many skills I use today in my position, including training in personnel issues, governmental relations, legal and contract issues and others."

Karen Isaacs Beaudway, May 1997
HR Communications Specialist
Carnegie Mellon University

"Being a working professional, the public administration program really met my needs. It gave me the credentials I need to further my career."

Gary Daugherty, May 1995
Fire Chief - Mercerville County, NJ

"Dr. Wheeland gave me special attention to help me prepare for my interview. This program prepared me for the daily things I encounter in working with the Commonwealth."

Monique Hales, May 1995
Management Intern - Governor's Public Administration Management Intern Program
Harrisburg, PA

"The active encouragement of an internship yielded a lot of networking and was invaluable in attaining this position. Combined with solid classroom teaching, the program provided a very well- rounded education."

Thomas Ryan, December 1994
Township Planner
Towamencin Township, PA

"Studies within the public administration program provided me with a complete theoretical and practical knowledge base, enabling me with the skills and confidence I need in working to fulfill my organization's mission."

Brent E. Haddix, December 1991
Program Administrator
Philadelphia Leadership Foundation