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Professional Work Experience (PWE) Waiver

The purpose of the MPA Professional Work Experience Practicum is to provide students an opportunity to apply and refine learning, further develop their competencies in a public service work environment, and gain additional experiences for career and professional development.

In certain circumstances, students may be eligible for a PWE waiver.  Students with prior experience in a professional or managerial level position in a government or nonprofit organization may seek to apply for a waiver from the Professional Work Experience Practicum requirement. 

To be Eligible for Waiver consideration:

  • 5+ years of public service work experience
  • Student must be currently working, and have worked for the past 2+ years in a position and in an organization that qualifies for the PWE Practicum Waiver
    • Organizations that quality:
      • Typically, governmental or nonprofit organizations
    • Positions that qualify:
      • Positions that benefit the public, somehow working for the greater good of our communities
      • Manage complex work
      • Assume primary responsibility for project management
  • Review the full PWE Waiver Policy and Process.
  • Meet with Associate Director of Career Services, Allison Binkley to discuss career goals and how the student’s current position qualifies for the waiver.
  • Complete Waiver form and appendices of support   

To apply for the PWE waiver:

  • Students must be currently enrolled and have completed PUBA 709, PUBA 710, PUBA 721, and 2 other core courses.
  • Meet with Associate Director of Career Services, Allison Binkley.
  • Complete Waiver form and appendices of support and submit to Associate Director of Career Services, Allison Binkley.  
  • The MPA Program Director, Dr. Rivenbark, will determine whether the applicant's experience meets departmental requirements for a waiver.

 **Admitted students interested in pursuing the PWE practicum waiver may consult with the Associate Director of Career Services, Allison Binkley, to determine potential waiver eligibility; however, students can not be officially approved or denied the waiver until they are eligible to apply.

 **All students who receive a PWE practicum waiver will still have to complete PUBA 745 Professional Work Experience, reflecting on and further developing those competencies from their work experience. 

Students who don't qualify for the PWE waiver must consult with the Associate Director of Alumni Relations & Professional Work Experience, Susan Austin, who will support the student in finding options to satisfy the requirement.

PWE Waiver Policy

PWE Waiver Petition Form