Public Administration

(Bachelor of Science)

As a broad-based, interdisciplinary, social science major, Public Administration is designed to prepare students for challenging careers in public and nonprofit organizations, as well as for further study in graduate programs. Students develop proficiency in organizational management and leadership, public policy analysis, program evaluation, policy development and implementation, budgeting, and governmental processes.

Graduates hold positions as professional administrators, policy analysts, budget specialists, program managers, personnel counselors, governmental affairs directors for businesses, and human resource specialists. Many pursue graduate studies in public administration, law, political science, social services, public policy, and public affairs.

Because of the wide range of course offerings in Public Administration, some students choose to sharpen their managerial skills so they can pursue careers in management within public or non-profit organizations. Other students choose to focus on understanding substantive policy issues (e.g., education, environmental policy, public finance, social justice) and public policy design.

All Public Administration majors engage in both theoretical and applied studies. Many courses include theory as well as problem-focused, applied learning. Students are encouraged to gain these experiences through independent study, community research projects, and an internship program administered by the department. Public Administration majors have completed internships in city, county and state executive offices, as well as non-profit agencies.

The major in Public Administration consists of three sets of requirements: required supporting courses, upper-level core courses, and elective credits within the major. Majors are encouraged to emphasize public management and policy, nonprofit management, or emergency management. Students who want to focus their study specifically on the nonprofit sector should consider earning the free-standing Nonprofit Management Certificate. A number of courses in emergency management meet the elective requirements of the major and are offered in cooperation with campus Outreach and Adult Access programs; a certificate is available in this area as well. Students are encouraged to seek assistance from a faculty adviser in creating their academic plan.

Considering a Double Major or a Major and a Minor?
Many Public Administration students choose to complete double majors in Political Science, Environmental Policy and Planning, or Economics. A second major complements the Public Administration curriculum, and makes students stronger candidates when seeking careers or entry into graduate programs. Students interested in the arts may want to consider the Arts Management minor.

Not interested in a Public Administration major? A minor in Public Administration fits well with majors in Political Science, Economics, Communication, Environmental Policy and Planning, Urban and Regional Studies, or Democracy and Justice Studies. See a faculty adviser early in your academic career for advice on these options.

Students may study abroad or at other campuses in the United States through UW-Green Bay’s participation in international exchange programs and the National Student Exchange program. Travel courses are another option for obtaining academic credits and completing requirements. For more information, contact the Office of International Education at (920) 465-2190 or see


The following is only an example of a four-year Public Administration degree program and is subject to change without notice. Students should consult a Public Administration program advisor to ensure that they have the most accurate and up-to-date information available about a particular four-year degree option.

Ray Hutchison; Professor; Ph.D., University of Chicago

John R Stoll; Professor; Ph.D., University of Kentucky, chair*

Dana Atwood; Associate Professor; Ph.D., Western Michigan University

Marcelo P Cruz; Associate Professor; Ph.D., University of California - Los Angeles

David J Helpap; Associate Professor; Ph.D., University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee*

Thomas S Nesslein; Associate Professor; Ph.D., University of Washington - Seattle

Laurel E Phoenix; Associate Professor; Ph.D., State University of New York - College of Environmental Science and Forestry*

Lora H Warner; Associate Professor; Ph.D., Virginia Commonwealth University

Aaron C Weinschenk; Associate Professor; Ph.D., University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee*

Elizabeth E Wheat; Associate Professor; Ph.D., Western Michigan University*

Alise Coen; Assistant Professor; Ph.D., University of Delaware


PU EN AF 102. Environment and Society. 3 Credits.

An examination of the relationship between humans and the biophysical environment at local, national, and global levels. Emphasis is given to the impact of personal attitudes, cultural beliefs, economics, politics, technology and available resources on environmental problems and solutions.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 198. First Year Seminar. 3 Credits.

First Year Seminar, topics vary.
Reserved for New Incoming Freshman.

PU EN AF 202. Introduction to Public Policy. 3 Credits.

Contemporary issues in American public policy. Substantive public policies such as those dealing with the American economy, health care, energy, environmental quality, the welfare state and social programs. Models of the policy process are also considered.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 215. Introduction to Public Administration. 3 Credits.

Using case studies, this course explores the principal tools and methods for conducting public affairs, the external and internal elements affecting public agencies, and the role of these elements and the human dimension in creating and implementing public policies and programs.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 220. Economics, Politics, and Government Action. 3 Credits.

Today, government plays a huge role in the economy in three broad ways. First, there is a large and growing array of economic laws and regulations. Second, the government provides a large range of services through various government programs and agencies. These include Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, government housing, unemployment and disability insurance, and various poverty programs, among others. Finally, government programs need to be financed. These include the federal income tax, state income taxes, Social Security taxes, inheritance taxes, property taxes, and high excise taxes on goods such as gasoline, alcohol and tobacco products, among others.
Fall Only.

PU EN AF 250. Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS). 2 Credits.

Computerized Geographic Information Systems (GIS) represent revolutionary software advancement that allow sophisticated information management, analysis and mapping with computer systems. In this class you will learn basic principles for creation and analysis of digital maps, cartographic concepts, and experience an intensive introduction to GIS software (e.g., ArcGIS).
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 299. Travel Course. 1-4 Credits.

Travel courses are conducted to various parts of the world and are led by one or more faculty members. May be repeated to different locations.
P: cons of instr & prior trip arr & financial deposit.

PU EN AF 301. Environmental Politics and Policy. 3 Credits.

U.S. and global environmental problems and their political implications. Emphasizes U.S. environmental politics, issues and controversies in environmental protection policy, the performance of governmental institution in response to environmental challenges, and strategies for environmental improvement.
P: POL SCI 101 or 202 or PU EN AF 202.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 305. Natural Resources Economic Policy. 3 Credits.

Acquaints the student with policies leading to arrangements for the development, management, and use of natural resources. Emphasizes the longer time horizon required for the conservation of resources and a general concern for the quality of ecosystems.
P: ECON 203.
Fall Only.

PU EN AF 306. Regulatory Policy and Administration. 3 Credits.

The origins, purposes and operation of regulatory agencies and the programs in the U.S.: theories of regulation, issues and controversies in regulatory policy, and decision-making in such areas as economic regulation, public health, consumer protection workplace safety and environmental quality.
P: POL SCI 101 or 202 or PU EN AF 202.
Fall Even.

PU EN AF 314. Administrative Law. 3 Credits.

Administrative law in the American federal (intergovernmental) system: connections between administrative law issues and issues of public policy; and legal dimensions of administrative problems.
P: POL SCI 101 or PU EN AF 215.
Fall Only.

PU EN AF 315. Public and Non-Profit Management. 3 Credits.

Using applied learning techniques, this course explores management in public and nonprofit organizations from the perspective of a manager. Topics include board leadership, role of executive, motivation, marketing, fundraising, planning, and more. Students investigate and analyze the management practices of a local organization.
P: POL SCI 101 or 202 or PU EN AF 202; REC: PU EN AF 215.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 321. Coastal Resources Policy and Management. 3 Credits.

The importance of coastal resources, ranging from Wisconsin to the Great Lakes to our Pacific, Atlantic, and Gulf coasts. We will study issues of development, overuse, risk, and their consequent human, environmental, aesthetic and economic impacts.
Fall Only.

PU EN AF 322. Environmental Planning. 3 Credits.

History, processes, and impacts of environmental planning in the United States. Action forcing legislation and its effect on environmental issues and processes. Combines earth sciences and natural sciences with mapping and planning to understand key aspects of adapting our built environment to not impose further on our natural environments, and in fact to remediate some of the damage caused to natural environments and social well-being. Emphasizes adaptive environmental planning and implementation at the national, state, and local levels in the contexts of growing human populations, decreasing natural resources, and climate change.
REC: PU EN AF 102 or ENV SCI 102.

PU EN AF 323. Sustainable Land Use. 3 Credits.

Various forms of public land-use controls in planning and administration, addressing "what, why and how" aspects of land-use controls. Smart Growth, Environmental Impact Analysis, and other comprehensive planning models studied.
P: jr st.

PU EN AF 324. Transitioning to Sustainable Communities. 3 Credits.

This course focuses on creating resilient communities based on localizing inputs/outputs to support jobs, housing, transportation, schools, agriculture and city services. It emphasizes the many facets of human settlements and the limited resources we depend on to structure our social, economic, and environmental systems, making them self-sustaining, energy-efficient, and reliant on local control for job creation, wealth creation, food production and other land use issues. Applying these innovative measures in every sector of daily life makes communities more resilient as they face higher energy costs and climate variability.
Fall Only.

PU EN AF 335. Principles and Practices of Emergency Management. 3 Credits.

The philosophy of comprehensive Emergency Management will be discussed with the four attendent steps, which include mitigation, preparedness, response and recover. In addition, legal issues involving state and Federal law effecting emergency operations will be studied.
REC: PU EN AF 315.

PU EN AF 336. Strategic Emergency Preparedness, Planning and Implementation. 3 Credits.

Strategic planning and budgeting is a very important component in emergency planning and mitigation. Learn how to acquire and allocate resources, plan for crises with or without warning, and implement preparedness programs.

PU EN AF 337. Disaster Response Operations and Management. 3 Credits.

Examine the roles and responsibilities of the players in a crisis event. Explore the various problems associated with response operations such as: inadequate preparedness measurers, safety and site security, politics, and record keeping.

PU EN AF 338. Disaster Recovery. 3 Credits.

Examine disaster recovery in isolation. Explore the short and long term effects of disasters, as well as, the process of putting families, businesses and communities back together. You will learn the importance of reconstruction and relocation.

PU EN AF 339. Political and Policy Dimensions of Emergency Management. 3 Credits.

This course considers the political and policy environment in which emergency management is practiced. It focuses on political processes and phenomena associated with mitigating the likely effects of extreme events, responding to them, and recovering from them. The course is intended to help emergency managers develop an understanding of local, state, federal, and intergovernmental politics affecting and affected by extreme events.

PU EN AF 344. Leadership in Organizations. 3 Credits.

Roles, functions and environments of organizational managers and leaders broadly defined, especially in public enterprises; issues of human resources management within these sectors.
Fall Odd.

PU EN AF 345. Public and Nonprofit Human Resource and Risk Management. 3 Credits.

Risk and human resource management as it affects not-for-profit organizations. This course is applicable to both nonprofit and governmental entities who utilized paid or volunteer staff and face multiple sources of risk to their functioning. Topical coverage will include risk assessment and planning as well as staff development, performance standards, and professional practices regarding proper interviewing, hiring, evaluation and dismissal procedures. Legal requirements and the institutional setting for both human resource and enterprise risk management will be examined.
Fall Only.

PU EN AF 350. GIS in Public and Environmental Policy. 2 Credits.

Uses state-of-the-art software to integrate digitized data maps, transfer data, manage relational data bases, overlay maps, display, query, edit interactive graphics, and geocode addresses. Focus is upon GIS applications tailored to public and environmental policy, e.g., tax base analysis, property mapping, natural resources inventory, crime demography, transportation routing, natural hazards, and emergency management.
P: PU EN AF 250
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 351. Water Resources Policy and Management. 3 Credits.

This course will cover the basics of water management and planning, covering local to global examples of such things as surface water pollution, mining of fossil aquifers, water wars at regional, interstate, and international levels.
P: PU EN AF 102 or ENV SCI 102.

PU EN AF 360. Immigration and Immigration Policy. 3 Credits.

Americans have come from every corner of the globe, and they have been brought together by a variety of historical processes--conquest, colonialism, the slave trade, territorial acquisition, and voluntary immigration. Immigration, anti-immigration sentiments, and the motivations and experiences of the migrants themselves are examined by looking at the many legal efforts to curb immigration and to define who is and is not an American, ranging from the Naturalization Law of 1795 (which applied only to "free-born white persons") to the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, the Emergency Quota Act of 1921, and the reform-minded Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, which opened the door to millions of newcomers, the vast majority from Asia and Latin America. Immigration is looked at from the perspective of the migrant--farmers and industrial workers, mechanics and domestics, highly trained professionals and small-business owners--who willingly pulled up stakes for the promise of a better life. The course sheds light on the relationships between race and ethnicity in the formation of American society, and it emphasizes the marked continuities across waves of immigration and across different racial and ethnic groups. The course will offer students the opportunity to develop their own perspective on the long history of calls for stronger immigration laws and the on-going debates over the place of immigrants in American society.
P: jr st.
Fall Only.

PU EN AF 378. Environmental Law. 3 Credits.

An overview of major environmental laws such as the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts, with emphasis on how these laws are implemented by the federal and state governments.
P: POL SCI 101 or 202 or PU EN AF 202 or 215.
Fall Only.

PU EN AF 379. Natural Resources Policy, Law, and Administration. 3 Credits.

This course examines public land and resources policy, law and administration from multiple perspectives. It covers environmental and administrative decision making and various contemporary resource management problems and conflicts.
P: POL SCI 101 or PU EN AF 202
Spring Even.

PU EN AF 380. Global Environmental Politics and Policy. 3 Credits.

This course explores the transnational and international context of environmental politics and policy. Particular focus areas include the causes of environmental harm, the meaning of sustainability, and the relevance of new environmental actors on the global stage.
P: jr st. REC: POL SCI 100

PU EN AF 390. Colloquium in Environmental Sustainability & Business. 1 Credit.

Required component of the Certificate in Environmental Sustainability and Business. Focus is placed be upon the nature of systems thinking systems dynamics, and problem solving. Will address systems dynamics in natural world policy creation, human creativity and the arts, and business decision making. Latter half of class is applications focussed.
P: jr st & EMBI certificate enrollment
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 402. Environmental and Resource Economics. 3 Credits.

Applications of tools such as cost-benefit analysis and other economic concepts in current public decision making, with special emphasis upon common property resources management.
P: ECON 303 or 305.

PU EN AF 406. State and Local Government. 3 Credits.

Policy and institutional comparisons across states and local governments through hands-on research, placing a special focus on Wisconsin's local governments.
P: POL SCI 101 or PU EN AF 215.

PU EN AF 407. Service in the Public Sector. 3 Credits.

This course explores what is meant by public service, with a special focus on service in local governmental settings. The course considers case studies from the International City/Council Management Association and what management and leadership in local government entails.
Fall Only.

PU EN AF 408. Public Policy Analysis. 3 Credits.

An introduction to public policy analysis and to the policy-making process, primarily in American government. The course emphasizes the political aspects of policy analysis, models and methods for rational design of public policies, and applications of policy studies to particular public problems.
P: POL SCI 101 or 202 or PU EN AF 202.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 409. Public Finance and Fiscal Policy. 3 Credits.

Effects of government spending and taxation on resource allocation, incomes, prices and employment. Includes consideration of the uses and effects of fiscal policy.
P: ECON 203.
Fall Odd.

PU EN AF 415. Public and Nonprofit Budgeting. 3 Credits.

The purposes and attributes of major public budgetary systems: principles and methods in designing and managing relationships among program planning, policy planning and budgetary operation; applications of analytical and decision-assisting tools in public budgetary operations.
P: POL SCI 101 or 202 or PU EN AF 202 or 215.

PU EN AF 425. Fundraising and Marketing for Nonprofits. 3 Credits.

The course is designed for students aspiring to manage a nonprofit or serve on a Board of Directors. Throughout the semester, students develop a portfolio of marketing and fundraising plans and materials for a nonprofit organization. Emphasis on writing for social media, case statements, total development plans, and grant seeking.
P: PU EN AF 215; REC PU EN AF 315.
Fall Only.

PU EN AF 426. Strategic Philanthropy: Civic Engagement Through Giving. 3 Credits.

A hands-on course where students learn the motives, methods, and values of philanthropy by studying local data, working with nonprofits and donors, and allocating actual funds (provided by community partners) to organizations in the community. Appropriate for all majors.
P: Junior status

PU EN AF 428. Public and Nonprofit Program Evaluation. 3 Credits.

A service-learning course that develops a working understanding and selected skills relating to the conduct of program evaluations. Throughout the semester, students develop an actual evaluation plan in partnership with a local public or nonprofit organization.
P: PU EN AF 215; REC: PU EN AF 315

PU EN AF 430. Seminar in Ethics and Public Action. 3 Credits.

A capstone course intended to introduce a range of ethical concerns in public affairs. Through theoretical and case study readings and applied projects, students deal with ethical issues and varied responses to them.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 450. Advanced Geographic Information Systems. 3 Credits.

Project-based course using ArcGIS. Students define a project, develop a database, analyze spatial data, and develop GIS maps displaying results of their analysis.
P: GEOG 350 or PU EN AF 350.
Spring Even.

PU EN AF 452. Planning Methods. 3 Credits.

The course will focus on planning methods for public and private sector agencies and businesses in the design and planning fields. Spatial analysis, Creating Comprehensive Plans, Neighborhood community development plans, and strategic planning methods will be discussed. How to conduct Charrettes and writing staff reports within the context of public participation will be explored.
P: Jr Standing
Fall Even.

PU EN AF 453. Cost Benefit Analysis. 3 Credits.

Application of tools and concepts in current economic decision making, with special emphasis upon Natural Resource management, environmental problems, market failure, and public policy approaches.

PU EN AF 461. Special Topics in Public and Environmental Affairs. 3 Credits.

An interdisciplinary study of public policy issues selected from public administration and environmental policy and planning. Includes issues such as health care reform, environmental policy analysis, policy planning.

PU EN AF 478. Honors in the Major. 3 Credits.

Honors in the Major is designed to recognize student excellence within interdisciplinary and disciplinary academic programs.
P: min 3.50 all cses req for major and min gpa 3.75 all UL cses req for major.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 490. EMBI Co-Op/Experience. 3 Credits.

Required component of the Certificate in Environmental Sustainability and Business. Enrolled students will be placed by EMBI in a business, nonprofit, or governmental setting that involves interdisciplinary problem solving within an environmental sustainability context. This will be a special co-op/internship/project experience.
P: Junior standing and enrollment in Environmental Sustainability and Business certificate program.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 493. Peer Mentor for First Year Seminar. 3 Credits.

In this course, students will work in First Year Seminar classes as peer mentors for first year students. Peer mentors will help promote the development of skills relevant to student success, will encourage student engagement with the university, and will act as a role model for first year students. Through this work, peer mentors will learn about college student development and effective practices in teaching and learning, will develop professional and interpersonal skills such as communication and leadership, and will have the opportunity to apply this knowledge in their work with first year students.
P: Successful completion of First Year Seminar and approval of Instructor.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 494. Teaching Assistantship. 3 Credits.

This course is designed to provide students the opportunity to learn about teaching as an assistant in a college-level course. The goals of this course include: to introduce upper-level undergraduate students to the scholarship on teaching and learning through regular discussions; to introduce students to the roles of college-level teachers; and to enhance knowledge and learning in the department course offerings. Related, there are goals and learning objectives outlined for the students of the class. Thus, you will observe and assist in finding the best ways to meet these goals and objectives through your study of teaching and learning scholarship, our weekly meetings, and your coordination of class activities. Course is repeatable for credit; may be taken 2 times for a total of 6 credits.
P: Jr standing; completion of course in previous semester REC: Major in one of the PEA programs (Environmental Planning and Policy, Public Administration, or Urban Studies.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 495. Research Assistantship. 3 Credits.

Students will assist faculty in conducting research. Responsibilities may include literature reviews, library investigations, questionnaire development, recruitment and interviewing of research participants, data collection, management of research studies, data entry, and some statistical analyses. Course is repeatable for credit; may be taken 2 times for a total of 6 credits.
P: jr standing or higher REC: completion of COM SCIENCE 205 Social Science Statistics (or similar course) and COM SCI 301 Foundations for Social Research (or similar course).

PU EN AF 497. Internship. 1-12 Credits.

Supervised practical experience in an organization or activity appropriate to a student's career and educational interests. Internships are supervised by faculty members and require periodic student/faculty meetings.
P: jr st.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 498. Independent Study. 1-4 Credits.

Independent study is offered on an individual basis at the student's request and consists of a program of learning activities planned in consultation with a faculty member. A student wishing to study or conduct research in an area not represented in available scheduled courses should develop a preliminary proposal and seek the sponsorship of a faculty member. The student's advisor can direct him or her to instructors with appropriate interests. A written report or equivalent is required for evaluation, and a short title describing the program must be sent early inthe semester to the registrar for entry on the student's transcript.
P: fr or so st with cum gpa > or = 2.50; or jr or sr st with cum gpa > or = 2.00.
Fall and Spring.

PU EN AF 499. Travel Course. 1-6 Credits.

Travel courses are conducted to various parts of the world and are led by one or more faculty members. May be repeated to different locations.
P: cons of instr & prior trip arr & financial deposit.