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Thread: MPA vs MBA

  1. #1
    bo79 is offline Registered User
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    MPA vs MBA

    Hello,

    I am just curios about the career options that are available to MPAs that are not available to MBAs and vice versa?

    Bo

  2. #2
    chris is offline Registered User
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    An MBA works in both public and private sector

    The same cannot be said of an MPA .

  3. #3
    Jeff Hampton is offline Registered User
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    Best of both worlds?

    OK, maybe not best of both worlds, but both worlds, at least:

    Columbia Southern University (DETC accredited) offers an MBA with a concentration in Public Administration .

  4. #4
    tolstoy is offline Registered User
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    Actually, the private sector drools over people with an MPA for jobs like risk analysts, strategic analysts etc. You can get a job as a fund manager or an analyst at Goldman Sachs with an MPA .

    From my experience, about half of the people that I've met with an MPA work in the private sector.

  5. #5
    BruceP is offline Registered User
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    Re: MPA vs MBA

    I've got an MPA and I believe that an MBA has more usefulness in both the public and private sectors... the MPA seems to be too specialized in the public sector... whereas the MBA can work in either...

    I guess when you look at the facts... the primary usefulness of the MPA v. MBA depends on what courses you took and their applicability to the world where you want to work... Alumni loyalty to fellow graduates can also be a distinct advantage

    Many military officers pursue the MBA and the MPA ... with perhaps the MBA edging out the MPA in numbers (a guess)...

    Bruce P
    MPA , Golden Gate University, 1989
    BS (Criminal Justice ), SUNY College at Buffalo, 1983
    AS (Liberal Arts), Univ of the State of New York, 1982
    Last edited by BruceP; 12-16-2003 at 03:26 PM.

  6. #6
    bo79 is offline Registered User
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    Thanks for the feed back everyone. So it would probable be fair to say that getting and MBA and MPA would be a complete waste of time in terms of advancing ones career?

    Bo

  7. #7
    obecve is offline Registered User
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    No, I think the message is that either can advance your career depending on the circumstance.
    Michael O'Brien, CRC, CVE
    BA, University of Missouri-Kansas City
    M.A.Ed. Chadron State College
    Ed.D. Oklahoma State University

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  9. #8
    chris is offline Registered User
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    Drools is a strong word

    I work in the public sector (state government) and prior to starting my MBA I talked with at least a dozen senior people (those who hire people) about whether I should get an MBA or an MPA . Every single one said an MBA . I reviewed a thread on the topic on Business week and they pretty much all said the same thing, MBA (don't go there!) goes both ways MPA doesn't. I looked on many companies HR web sites and they all wanted MBA 's for their management training programs. If you know people at Goldman Sachs, perchance did they already have their jobs when they got their MPA ? Back during the go-go 90's anybody with a degree from a top tier school could get a job anywhere. I saw an interview with a kid from an Ivy League school that had a degree in communications and he was starting a management trainee job at $40k with a signon bonus. Those days are gone for now so you should try to be as flexible as possible with your degree. In this case the MBA is more flexible than an MPA . And yes, getting both would be a waste of money.

  10. #9
    tolstoy is offline Registered User
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    The MPAs that I know went to school full-time 2 went to Harvard and 2 went to Princeton. I think the other went to Minnesota or Michigan, but I'm not sure.

    The Goldman analyst was one of the Princeton ones. He even said that many of the supporters of the MPA program at Princeton were having a tough time because so many of their grads ended up in the private sector.

    Maybe it's just that the grads I know are from top programs, but I didn't see them in any way disadvantaged by doing the MPA instead of an MBA .

    I guess there's something to going to a top school versus a below average MBA program, too.

  11. #10
    MikeMark is offline Registered User
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    MPA vs MBA

    Hi all,

    This is my first time I posted on this message board. I have both degrees, and my careers have been in secondary education , higher education (both graduate and undergraduate), industry as a consultant as well as a few positions in state government, I would advice you to decide on what environment your career aspiration fall. An MBA offers more quantitative approachs to solving problems where as an MPA offers more qualitative approachs. What do I mean by this. MBA curriculum applies many quantitative formulas found in accounting , finance, operations and some advanced marketing course to solutions to the organization challenges. The MPA teaches one how more to function in a fish bowl. How to handle gruops of different constituencies. The MPA taught me to identify the politics either in a government or private setting, and that the politics is the oil that keeps the system moving. What degree? Both have serve me well. In my twenty years, a fellow MPA student became president of a meduim size company, another became a VP of a Fortune 500 and than President of a Chamber of Commerce, another VP of a college; a fellow MBA student became partner in an environmental firm, another director of a manufacturing facility, and one president of a bank. First, decide what environment ( financial, healthcare, government, non-profit or human services) and thatn talk with individuals in that environment and decided what is best for your career aspirations. Especially today ehere many school offer many alternative degress such as MBA -Healthcare, MBA non-profit, MPA -Healthcare and MPA non-profit. Whatever you do get the degree--it will open doors that are presently closed. Good Luck!

    Michael Markham
    Director of Placement
    MPA Suffolk University
    MBA
    MJM

  12. #11
    MikeMark is offline Registered User
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    MPA vs MBA

    Hi all,

    This is my first time I posted on this message board. I have both degrees, and my careers have been in secondary education , higher education (both graduate and undergraduate), industry as a consultant as well as a few positions in state government, I would advice you to decide on what environment your career aspiration fall. An MBA offers more quantitative approachs to solving problems where as an MPA offers more qualitative approachs. What do I mean by this. MBA curriculum applies many quantitative formulas found in accounting , finance, operations and some advanced marketing course to solutions to the organization challenges. The MPA teaches one how more to function in a fish bowl. How to handle gruops of different constituencies. The MPA taught me to identify the politics either in a government or private setting, and that the politics is the oil that keeps the system moving. What degree? Both have served me well. In my twenty years since obtaining both degrees, a fellow MPA student became president of a meduim size company, another became a VP of a Fortune 500 and than President of a Chamber of Commerce, another VP of a college; a fellow MBA student became partner in an environmental firm, another director of a manufacturing facility, and one president of a bank. First, decide what environment ( financial, healthcare, government, non-profit or human services) and thatn talk with individuals in that environment and decided what is best for your career aspirations. Especially today ehere many schools offer many alternative degress such as MBA -Healthcare, MBA non-profit, MPA -Healthcare and MPA non-profit. Whatever you do get the degree--it will open doors that are presently closed. Good Luck!

    Michael Markham
    Director of Placement
    MPA Suffolk University
    MBA
    MJM

  13. #12
    chris is offline Registered User
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    There you have it

    Goldman Sachs is notorious for hiring Ivy League. Michigan isn't considered part of the Ivy League but is just as good. The Goldman Sachs guy I know has a Harvard MBA . Yes, a Harvard MPA will probably take you somewhere quicker than an MBA from a no name school. Not necessarily farther, but it will open doors quicker. That is just how it is. Unless you have a ton of money, getting an MPA and an MBA is a waste of money. The MBA is too interchangeable to need a supplemental MPA . If you want to get more education you could be well on the way to a PHD with the money and time spent on a second masters.

  14. #13
    bo79 is offline Registered User
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    Re: There you have it

    Originally posted by chris
    Goldman Sachs is notorious for hiring Ivy League. Michigan isn't considered part of the Ivy League but is just as good. The Goldman Sachs guy I know has a Harvard MBA. Yes, a Harvard MPA will probably take you somewhere quicker than an MBA from a no name school. Not necessarily farther, but it will open doors quicker. That is just how it is. Unless you have a ton of money, getting an MPA and an MBA is a waste of money. The MBA is too interchangeable to need a supplemental MPA. If you want to get more education you could be well on the way to a PHD with the money and time spent on a second masters.
    In the past I have thought about going for a PhD in BA at Touro after I get my LLM. However I think that would really limit a persons job options to mostly only education and government. I think that in the real world most employer would much rather hire someone with an MBA instead of a PhD in Business. Wouldn't most companis say you're over qualified and throw you're resume in the trash when they see that you have a PhD?

    Bo

  15. #14
    Han
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    Re: Re: There you have it

    Originally posted by bo79


    In the past I have thought about going for a PhD in BA at Touro after I get my LLM. However I think that would really limit a persons job options to mostly only education and government. I think that in the real world most employer would much rather hire someone with an MBA instead of a PhD in Business. Wouldn't most companis say you're over qualified and throw you're resume in the trash when they see that you have a PhD?

    Bo
    I think you have a good point, but I think a Doctorate will help with consulting, and executive level jobs. Most of our execs have a doctorate, and consulting, you can never sell yourself too much. They want the experts.
    Han

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