Public Service Fellowships

Matching Exceptional Masters and Ph.D Students with Public Service Sponsors

The central mission of the Center for Public Service (CPS) is to promote and support public service throughout Oregon.

We pursue this calling through a range of programs including leadership and professional development, policy research, and co-produced consulting and analysis services. In addition, one of our key offerings is providing our public and non-profit partners with high potential talent through a series of paid graduate fellowships.

We have been sourcing exceptional graduate talent for Oregon’s public service sector since 2002. Our objective is to match our partners’ talent needs with exceptional students and newly-minted graduates from PSU and other high quality graduate programs across the U.S. It’s a simple, but powerful premise: that Oregon’s public service organizations can far better achieve their important missions by taking full advantage of versatile, well-prepared, and committed public servants who are just launching their careers.

This “talent pipeline” approach benefits partners and Fellows alike. It provides a return path to public service for students who have left Oregon to pursue college and/or graduate degrees elsewhere. For other current and newly-minted graduates, our Fellowships provide “bridge opportunities” for those who are drawn to the Pacific Northwest and its reputation for policy innovation and high-caliber public administration. In return, our partners get access to an exceptional, diverse and national-class talent bank (and advanced degree specialists) who often are in short supply locally.

 

Our Recruiting Strategy

We actively recruit talent from Portland State University along with other institutions in Oregon (e.g. UO, OSU, Willamette). But our quest for graduate talent also extends to more than 60 of America's leading graduate schools in public administration, public policy, and public affairs (along with other pertinent academic disciplines such as law, finance, information and data science, and public health, to name a few).

Our commitment to talent attraction stems from the belief that effective public service can no longer be attained by simply filling vacancies as they occur. Instead, a continuous, intentional effort aimed at attracting and cultivating high potential talent is in order. We believe tomorrow's public service workforce must be adaptively inclined and armed with 21st century tools, techniques, and thinking to deal with the opportunities and problems that lie before us (think climate change, social justice and equity, traffic, homelessness, etc.). Tomorrow's workforce must also be able to engage, and be representative of, all the communities in our diversity-rich society.