Skip to content

Public Administration Program Student Testimonials

Committed to Helping Build Your Future

Hear from some of our online Master of Public Administration graduates as they share about their experience at Anna Maria College, the MPA program, and how it has helped them in their careers in public service and lives.

Since graduating with my degree online from Anna Maria College, I have received two promotions both at my full-time and part-time teaching job. I have no doubt that the addition of my degree to my resume played a large part in that. I encourage everyone to further their education early – don’t wait!”
– Michael P. Gonynor, MPA in Fire/Rescue Services Graduate
“Fire and rescue services are more complex than most people think. My AMC MPA has provided both global and specific tools to be an effective and contemporary fire service leader. The most beneficial part of the program would be the diversity of ideas, concepts and fellow students. My advice to incoming students would be to commit to the program, work hard and be engaged.”
– Steven Achilles, MPA in Fire/Rescue Services Graduate
“The professors were very understanding of what I had going on in my personal life. They were very good about not overwhelming students with work but at the same time it was challenging and I felt that I learned a lot. I would recommend incoming students to come into the program with an open mind. Before I started the program, I would have never thought I would thrive in a program that was 100% online but I did. I’d tell incoming students to not get intimidated by the course load and to complete all assignments in a timely fashion even if professors give leeway on due dates because each individual assignment requires special attention.”
– Kristoffer Ealy, MPA in Criminal Justice Graduate
The program has prepared me well to respond to contemporary challenges faced by emergency services. It helps with the EFO program. The most beneficial part of the program was gaining the perspective of a city manager, exploring budgets and strategic plans. We need to make budget requests based on DATA! My advice to incoming students would be to apply yourself. What you learn at Anna Maria will help you accomplish your goals.”
– Carl M. DeCarlo, MPA in Fire/Rescue Services Graduate
“The most beneficial part of the MPA program in Fire Service Administration was having the many professors that had extensive backgrounds and history in the fire service. Their knowledge and experience in fire service administration was passed along to those of us wishing to advance in rank so that we may continue the rich history of the fire service while enabling us to create new visions for our fire agencies.”
– Timothy Salamon, MPA in Fire/Rescue Services Graduate
The most beneficial part of the program is the quality of the instructors. They are knowledgeable and push you to do well. They will work with you if there is a problem and are concerned about your learning – not just getting to the end of the course. My advice to incoming students would be to be prepared. The online learning platform is great but you must be disciplined and stay with it. Stay involved in the online forums because it is a great way to get several perspectives on the week’s topic. I wish my own college was as student oriented and helpful. Everyone from the first person who contacted me about beginning my degree to the last person checking to make sure I had everything in order to graduate has been wonderful.”
– Stephen Malley, MPA in Emergency Management Graduate
“This online program has allowed me to continue my education through some significant events in my life. Retirement from Marine Corps after 50 years and a move to our home in Tennessee. I found quality instruction and interacted with a wide spectrum of people from varying walks of life. My advice to incoming students would be to never stop learning. Use the modern tools of education to continue to advance your understanding of your area of focus, a new area and most importantly – other people.”
– Christopher Clayton, MPA in Public Sector Management Graduate
“The Masters in Public Administration online program at Anna Maria is great. I have been in the program for 6 months and I have completed three courses. The flexibility of the online environment really helps to cater to the full-time professional. The best advice I would share with incoming students is time. To be successful, you must put the time into learning. It is critical to complete the readings and read all of the posts from other students. The more you put into the program, the more you will get out of it.”
– David A. Lima, MPA in Public Sector Management Graduate
“The Anna Maria online MPA degree program has allowed for further meticulation. Presently, unable to commit to a class room setting with a scheduled time to meet each week, the online program has solved this obstacle. The benefits attained through the online program are numerous ranging from furthering my educational objectives to learning additional areas of interest previously unknown. The most beneficial part of an online program is the ability to continue educational objectives which would otherwise not be achievable with a traditionally scheduled weekly classroom location. Additionally, the online setting allows for meeting, through the discussion segment, many other students from differing geographical locations. The advice for incoming students is to develop a study/participation schedule. The first few weeks of the class will establish the routine. Lastly, enjoy the class. I have never regretted making the decision to enroll in the online degree MPA program.”
– Jane Carlson, MPA in Emergency Management Graduate
“The ten-class program was very beneficial to me on many different levels. It was a huge benefit to be in class with people from so many different areas of the country with such diverse backgrounds—everyone from non-firefighters and cops to fire chiefs—participating as equals and learning from each other. The repeated help registering me for my next class and getting my book lists early was awesome and made my life easy. The 24 hour IT support was knowledgeable and helpful every time I called.”
– Chris Schmit, MPA in Fire/Rescue Services Graduate
“The higher level educational experience with AMC has allowed me to truly make a difference for our internal and external customers by applying what I have learned to help make our community a safer place to live. The flexibility in scheduling and the online learning promoted a more student oriented environment while working a full-time job. My advice to incoming students would be to utilize the services AMC has to offer and seek assistance if you need it. Everyone is here to help you so that you will be successful.”
– Brent Christopherson, MPA in Fire/Rescue Services Graduate
“The MPA-Emergency Management degree from Anna Maria has benefited me in several ways. My knowledge of both administration and emergency management was greatly enhanced. This has facilitated obtaining a new position with the Department of Homeland Security which offers both experiential and financial gains while also making my ability to lead in an administrative environment improved and more valuable. This degree has complemented my other education and experience by strengthening my resume and permitting me to advance on a personal and professional level. The most beneficial part of the program would have to be that those in the positions of instruction brought their experience and their desire to teach into the online classroom. This was evident across the spectrum and the level of responsiveness and willingness to help has been apparent from the application process to graduation. The flexibility of an online MPA program, and especially one that focuses on emergency management, was and is an invaluable asset for Anna Maria. I would advise any potential or new student to the program to approach the program with the willingness to learn and apply themselves, always remembering that the end result is to be a better asset, personally and professionally, in order to serve their families, their communities and society as a whole. Obtaining a degree is always second to gaining the knowledge, skills and abilities to make positive change.”
– Eugene Elliott, MPA in Emergency Management Graduate
“The most beneficial part of the program is that you can take the courses from anywhere in the world and still get the highest quality education possible. The instructors are the same high quality instructors whether in-class or online. My advice to incoming students would be to enjoy the classes, interact with all the students and the instructor and have fun. The instructors are always there if you need help. The instructors are top notch and are an asset to the school.”
– Thomas Martinuk, MPA in Fire/Rescue Services Graduate
“The interaction with the very diverse student group was very beneficial in gaining insight to problems that were common to many professions but with a wide variety of solutions. My advice to incoming students is to not think this is a quick and easy journey to a degree. Be prepared to work hard and perhaps harder than in a classroom environment. There is no back row in an online class. This has been an incredible journey for me personally, and I’m deeply grateful to AMC.
– Phillip Ludos, MPA in Public Sector Management Graduate
“The benefits of receiving my online graduate degree in emergency management are countless. The flexibility of the program allowed me to work my full-time job as a Sr. IT Project Manager even when I had to travel to client sites. The online degree did not “skimp” on content nor discussion sessions with the professors or classmates on subjects. The emergency management field is ever changing and is being exposed to the public due to the major events happening around the world. The most beneficial part of the program for me was the years of experience the professors had in the field. It was unreal the various backgrounds and how many of them participated in some of the most memorable and tragic events such as; 911, Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Sandy and the military exposure as well. That type of experience allowed me a greater understanding and a “first hand” seat when similar events were taking place during our class sessions. The various weather changes happening around the country allowed my professor to explain the weather patterns and why such climates were taking place. The program is well rounded and I don’t think I would have gotten the type of content and experience from my classroom discussions from another program. My classmates came from various backgrounds and fields and were not shy in sharing experiences and their point of views on subjects. The whole program was a fantastic journey!

I advise incoming students to make sure they reach out to their professors. They want you to succeed and they don’t mind if you call them when you have a need for your assignments or work schedule. Participate in your online class discussions – you will be amazed at the wealth of knowledge shared among your classmates. Believe it or not, many of you will be taking the same courses along your educational path and it will feel good to “see” them online with you. This was a great educational investment.”
– Angela D. Grady, MS in Emergency Management Graduate
The flexibility that the online program affords me is the only way I would have been able to obtain my master’s degree while working full time and raising a family. My advice to incoming students would be to get into a weekly routine to complete necessary readings, discussion posts and written assignments. By keeping a routine you will stay focused and not fall behind on assignments.”
– Roberta Crawford, MPA in Emergency Management Graduate
“The most beneficial part of the program was the high level of instructors and interactions with other students who come from all parts of the country.”
– James Buchanan, MPA in Emergency Management Graduate

Request More Information

Complete this form to receive information about coursework, admissions, tuition, and more.