Mission and strategic plan

The mission of the School of Public Affairs and its degree programs is to enhance the performance of governmental and nonprofit institutions in New York and the nation in the interest of effective and equitable public service and public policy in a diverse society. Using insights from theory, research, and practice, we are a multidisciplinary community of scholars engaged in teaching, research, and outreach to achieve this mission. We place special emphasis on educating responsive and accountable leaders who combine managerial expertise, creative and critical thinking, and rigorous analysis in the formation and execution of public policy. The School also serves as a site for debate and reflection on issues of public importance to New York and the world beyond.

Our Strategic Vision for the 21st Century

The School of Public Affairs' faculty recently adopted a 5-year strategic plan to address global challenges while enhancing and expanding the School's historic role in New York City.

The plan calls for a strong commitment to globalization and digital technology, greater support for students in and out of the classroom, and the building and development of administrative programs and a robust infrastructure.  It is supported by the key themes below.

The School of Public Affairs' strategic plan is as follows:

  • Build a large, distinguished undergraduate public affairs program.
  • Enhance curriculum through establishment of Master's program in Arts Administration to be housed in the Weissman School of Arts & Sciences.
  • Elevate and expand MS in Higher Education Administration through integration with Master of Public Administration program.
  • Develop and leverage international programs through engagement of partner institutions and linking courses through distance technologies.
  • Revive discussion of SPA's involvement in doctoral education.
  • Improve practices in assessment of student learning.
  • Improve students' overall quality of life.
  • Continue to build partnership base with other universities, school principal development programs, and non-academic institutions.
  • Build a first-class research infrastructure.
  • Develop a resource base consistent with teaching, research, and community engagement goals.