Seven Shippensburg University students will be inducted to Pi Alpha Alpha (PAA), The National Honor Society for Public Affairs and Administration on May 7.
This will be the first induction ceremony for PAA at SU. SU is the only school in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) to have an honor society for students of public administration.
The seven students to be inducted include five master’s of public administration, and two bachelor of science students. The MPA students are Kathryn Lawson, Aaron McMahan, Stuart Veinotte, Timothy Carr and Lisa Schaefer. The bachelor’s students are David Juba and Max Morelock.
The ceremony will be in conjunction with National Public Service Recognition Week and PAA is working with the Central Pennsylvania chapter of the American Society for Public Administration (CPAASPA).
“This is so awesome for, not only the students in the public administration program, but the whole university to be involved with something like this,” said Amanda Olejarski, who helped SU’s public administration program apply for PAA.
Only four other schools in Pennsylvania are in PAA. They are the University of Pittsburgh, Marywood University, Pennsylvania State University at Harrisburg and Villanova University.
Olejarski worked with MPA student Stefanie Pfister for the last couple of years from the beginning of the application process.
“SU is really unique in that we offer a public administration program for the undergrads and then we also offer the master’s program and getting this Honor Society really sets us apart from all the other PASSHE schools,” Pfister said.
At the event, SU MPA student Phil Wolgemuth will receive the Outstanding Student in Public Administration Award. Also, PA Secretary of Transportation, Barry Schoch, will receive the Excellence in Public Service Award and Nancy Dering Mock, who has a 25-year career in public service, will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award.
SU professor of political science Ronnie Tucker will be the keynote speaker at the event. Tucker has over three decades of experience teaching public administration and will give attendees at the ceremony an overview of ethics.
“I think it really speaks to how good our program is here at Ship and I think it sets the bar for the rest of the schools,” Tucker said.
“Being a member, I was inducted in Mississippi State, so I understand how important it is and I think it’s a great asset for Ship.”
David Juba is a PAA inductee and also attended a forum recently held by CPAASPA where he learned a lot and got to network with professionals in his field.
“Professionally, it was a lot of good information in terms of the process and the implementation of policy,” Juba said.
“I look at the public administration field from the standpoint of, these organizations maintain the welfare and the future of the state. If we don’t have a good public health care system, if we don’t have a good state transportation system, it becomes problematic for our future.”
Dan Smedly, senior at SU and public administration major, also attended the forum.
“It was good to see it from their perspective. We talk about the basics in our public policy classes and they put it into practice every day,” Smedly said.
“It shows that the stuff you are using in class can be used in the real world.”
The event on May 7 will begin at 6:15 p.m. and will end about 8 p.m. It will be in Reisner Dining Hall in the Tuscarora Room. It is free for SU students to attend. Students from other schools will be charged $20, members will be charged $25 and non-members will be charged $30.
SU attendees must confirm their attendance with Amanda Olejarski by April 30. Her email is email@example.com.