Thoughtful Public Service
For three decades, CPAP has served as a center of thoughtful inquiry on pressing issues of public sector governance. We are proud of CPAP's legacy in the fields of public administration and public policy, a tradition of scholarship dedicated to, as we say, "making democracy work in a Constitutional republic." Our students and faculty pursue diverse fields of inquiry, bringing to our programs wide ranging knowledge and experience. Our alumni include nationally recognized scholars and public servants working in local, state, and federal government agencies. Whether they go on to an academic or another professional career, CPAP's MPA and PHD graduates do so with a special appreciation for the role of ideas and scholarship in the maintenance of robust democratic institutions.
Scholarship and Community
CPAP is more than an academic department; we are a community dedicated to thoughtful public service through scholarship. CPAP is small when compared with other nationally-recognized schools of public affairs and public administration, permitting our students greater personal attention in academic advising and career guidance. Our size enables our faculty, staff, and students to develop strong personal ties, friendships and professional relationships that often last long beyond their time at CPAP. No event better illustrates CPAP's commitment to both scholarship and community than our annual High Table celebration. High Table brings faculty, students, alumni, and invited guests together to consider important questions in public administration and public policy, and to respond to the annual High Table lecture given by a distinguished academician in the field.
Three Campuses, One Program
CPAP's three campuses - in Blacksburg, Alexandria, and Richmond - draw together students with diverse experiences and interests. Our Blacksburg location is situated on the main Virginia Tech campus in beautiful southwest Virginia in the Thomas Conner House, home to a thriving academic community for master's and doctoral students. This traditional campus atmosphere offers a striking contrast to our locations in old town Alexandria, which serves the Washington, DC metropolitan area, and in Richmond, which serves the Commonwealth's capital city. Whereas in Blacksburg a majority of CPAP students are full-time, most at our Alexandria and Richmond locations are part-time students, many of whom work full-time in federal and state government. Our students benefit from the diverse experiences and viewpoints of their peers from across the state, learning through exposure to common questions and challenges of policy and administration in different settings, and developing a network of peers working in local, state, and national government organizations.
Major Research University
CPAP students enjoy full access to the programs and resources of Virginia Tech, a major research university still grounded in the values of the land-grant college out of which it has grown. Founded in 1872 as a land-grant college named Virginia Agricultural and Mechanical College, Virginia Tech is now a comprehensive, innovative research university with the largest full-time student population in Virginia, the largest number of degree offerings of any university in Virginia, and off-campus educational facilities in six regions of the state. Through a combination of its three missions of teaching and learning, research and discovery, and outreach and engagement, Virginia Tech continually strives to accomplish the charge of its motto: Ut Prosim (That I May Serve). CPAP students attend myriad cultural and sporting events, student groups, intramural athletics, lectures and seminars, and take advantage of nationally ranked graduate programs across Virginia Tech and the School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA).