Carolina MPA 50th Anniversary Alumni Celebration


Carolina MPA 50th Anniversary Alumni Celebration

March 31, 2017
School of Government
Chapel Hill

Join us for a great half-day that will include an educational event, the Deil S. Wright Lecture, networking time with students, and a celebratory anniversary dinner!



Message from Alumni Board President Johanna Foster

May 5, 2016

Dear fellow alumnus,

Fall 2016 marks the Carolina MPA program's 50th anniversary, an accomplishment for which we all should feel enormous pride. Over the decades, the program has seen a lot of changes----its move from Political Science to the School of Government in 1997; the addition of an online format that has welcomed more than 225 students since its inception three years ago; the increase in student and faculty diversity; and an education that launches careers not only in government, but also nonprofit, higher education administration, among others.

In an effort to keep pace with the program's changes and the interests of our expanding alumni community, the Alumni Association board re-examined the structure and purpose of the Public Administration Conference. For the past four years, the conference has experienced a steady decline in alumni attendance despite changes in marketing and strong efforts by conference co-chairs. In 2015, only 32 percent of the 200 conference attendees were alumni. The balance was comprised of an increasing number of students from the on-campus and online formats of the program. Working directly with MPA program staff, the board sought to create events that better meet the needs of our alumni and students. 

After lengthy discussions, the board decided to reimagine the conference, making it a one-day event whose primary focus is alumni engagement. The first of this annual event will take place in spring 2017. The Deil S. Wright Lecture and an educational event will anchor the day, followed by cocktails and dinner. The dinner will offer an opportunity to celebrate the program's 50th anniversary, share the program's accomplishments and goals, and learn about the School's capital campaign.

I will also note that MPA program staff members will create a separate event for on-campus and online students to come together in a policy immersion experience for academic credit. Alumni are always welcome to help with this event, which represents just one of many ways you can interact with students. Other ways to stay connected  include the newly-established mentorship program, the assessment center, and the alumni picnic.

I hope you'll be as excited as I am about this change, and join me and the alumni board as we celebrate our 50th anniversary and look to the next 50 years.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions.

Kindest regards,

Johanna Hawfield Foster
MPA Alumni Board President


Note: Details of the March 31, 2017, event, including the Deil Wright lecturer, will be posted here as they are made firm.