Professional Affiliations

Professional Affiliations

Public Administration faculty and students are members of the following professional organizations, where they play an active role. Joining these professional organizations is a good way to network with experienced members of the field. Students who are interested in getting involved with any of these organizations should contact them directly with any questions.

Public Administration General:

ASPA (American Society for Public Administration) is the professional home for over 10,000 PA practitioners, academics and students. Its mission is to advance excellence in public service. ASPA was established 59 years ago to professionalize the public service, to keep members on the cutting edge of good government, and to help answer the enduring question of how to make government work better. Currently, Portland State University serves as the home for the ASPA Cascade Chapter.

NASPAA (Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration) serves as a national and international resource for the promotion of excellence in education for the public service. Its institutional membership includes more than 280 university programs in the United States in public administration, policy, and management. NASPAA is also the accreditor of its member schools, seeking to promote the quality of education. It accomplishes its purposes through direct services to its member institutions.

Local Government:

ICMA (International City/County Management Association) is the world’s leading association of professional city and county managers and other employees who serve local governments. Founded in 1914, ICMA advances professional local government through leadership, management, innovation, and ethics. Their vision is to be the leading professional association dedicated to creating and supporting thriving communities throughout the world. ICMA's members are the professional city, town, and county managers who are appointed by elected officials to oversee the day-to-day operation of their communities. Portland State University MPA Students can be members of the Student Chapter.

LOC (League of Oregon Cities) is a governmental entity formed by an intergovernmental agreement by Oregon’s incorporated cities. The League was founded in 1925 and is governed by a 16-member Board of Directors. LOC works with its member cities to help local government better serve the citizens of Oregon. The League brings city officials together from around the state and the result is a unified, powerful and influential force. Whether it’s a day of advocacy at the Capitol, a workshop in Prineville designed to get the most out of city financial resources, or more than 500 elected and appointed officials networking at the annual LOC conference, the activities of the League reflect the commitment, vision and professionalism of city government in Oregon.

OCCMA (Oregon City/County Management Association) is comprised of Oregon city and county managers, chief administrators, assistants to city and county managers and administrators, and other consultants and academics professionally interested in local government in Oregon. The mission of OCCMA is to support and stimulate our members and the profession in order to foster responsible, responsive local government with the objective of improving the livability of Oregon communities. Many OCCMA members are also members of ICMA. Both organizations serve as a useful network for managers to share ideas and information. They also function as a strong base for personal and professional support and development. You do not need to be a member of one organization to join the other. Their website provides information on how to apply for OCCMA membership.


ARNOVA (Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action) is the U.S.-based, national and international association that connects scholars, teachers, and practice leaders interested in research on nonprofit organizations, voluntary action, philanthropy and civil society. Founded in 1971 as the Association of Voluntary Action Scholars, ARNOVA is a neutral, open forum committed to strengthening the research about and helping shape better practice in these realms. ARNOVA brings together both theoretical and applied interests, helping scholars gain insight into the day-to-day concerns of third-sector organizations, while providing nonprofit professionals with connections to research they can use to improve the work of their organizations and the quality of life for citizens and communities. Principal activities include an annual conference, publications, electronic discussions and special interest groups.

Health Administration:

ACHE (American College of Healthcare Executives) is an international professional society of more than 40,000 healthcare executives who lead hospitals, healthcare systems and other healthcare organizations. ACHE offers its prestigious FACHE® credential, signifying board certification in healthcare management. ACHE's established network of more than 80 chapters provides access to networking, education and career development at the local level. In addition, ACHE is known for its magazine, Healthcare Executive, and its career development and public policy programs. Through such efforts, ACHE works toward its goal of being the premier professional society for healthcare executives dedicated to improving healthcare delivery. The local chapter of ACHE is Oregon Society of Healthcare Executives.

AUPHA (Association of University Programs in Health Administration) is a global network of colleges, universities, faculty, individuals and organizations dedicated to the improvement of healthcare delivery through excellence in healthcare management and policy education. Its mission is to foster excellence and drive innovation in health management and policy education, and promote the value of university-based management education for leadership roles in the health sector. It is the only non-profit entity of its kind that works to improve the delivery of health services – and thus the health of citizens – throughout the world by educating professional managers at the entry level. AUPHA's membership includes the premier baccalaureate, master’s and doctoral degree programs in health administration education in the United States, Canada, and around the world. Its faculty and individual members represent more than 400 colleges and universities.

CAHME (Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education) aims to serve the public interest in advancing the quality of healthcare management education by: Setting measurable criteria for excellent healthcare management education, supporting, assisting and advising programs which seek to meet or exceed the criteria and continuously improve, accrediting graduate programs that meet or exceed the criteria, and making this information easily available to interested constituencies.

IHI Open School (Institute for Healthcare Improvement) has a mission to advance health care improvement and patient safety competencies in the next generation of health professionals worldwide. Launched in September 2008, the IHI Open School provides students of medicine, nursing, public health, pharmacy, health administration, dentistry, and other allied health professions with the opportunity to learn about quality improvement and patient safety at no charge. The online, educational community features a growing catalog of online courses, extensive content and resources, and a network of local Chapters that organize events and activities on campuses around the world. There is a joint PSU and OHSU IHI Open School Chapter.