Mission & Values

The Trachtenberg School's Mission

A group of students stand outside a GW building at TSPPPA orientation smiling and talking

The Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration enhances the quality of democratic governance. We equip aspiring and current public service professionals coming from wide-ranging backgrounds with the tools to analyze policy and lead and manage organizations and teams. Our faculty’s scholarship informs debate on current and emerging policy and administration issues. We foster effective teaching to prepare students for active and reflective engagement in pursuit of the public interest.

We value: respect for differences of all kinds, social equity, kindness, collaboration, fairness, civility, humility and inclusivity.

Commitment to Teaching Quality

What We Value

  • Providing outstanding learning experiences for all students
  • Providing useful and timely feedback to our students on their work
  • Consistently receiving and incorporating feedback from our students and alumni about ways to enhance our teaching
  • Working collaboratively with our faculty colleagues, alumni and employers to ensure the integrity and saliency of our curricula

How We Measure Success

  • Each individual course is evaluated by all students using forms that include both close-ended and open-ended questions.
  • Feedback on the curriculum and all school services and support is collected from all graduating MPA and MPP students during the capstone classes.
  • Capstone presentations are evaluated to assess student competencies by faculty and alumni using structured feedback forms.
  • The overall program is reviewed using survey findings from alumni about their experience in the program.
  • The school’s program directors, as well as the faculty, meet at least annually to consider the student and alumni feedback about the curricula.
  • The school’s program directors meet at least annually to consider student feedback about the courses and instructors.
  • The school’s advisory board is consulted at biannual meetings about curricular matters and competencies needed in the workplace.

Program-Specific Missions


MPA Mission

The Master of Public Administration program at the Trachtenberg School prepares students for leading and managing public service organizations and programs in all sectors.


MPP Mission

The Master of Public Policy program at the Trachtenberg School prepares students for leading, managing and conducting public policy analysis, evaluation and research in all sectors. 



MA-ENRP Mission

The Master of Arts in Environmental Resource Policy (MA-ENRP) prepares students for environmental policy careers in government, nonprofit organizations and the private sector. Our students are able to work at the intersection of the natural and human worlds on a broad and ever-evolving set of issues such as climate change, urban sustainability, biodiversity, environmental justice, land, air, and water pollution, renewable and nonrenewable resource use and food and agriculture.


PhD Mission

The multidisciplinary PhD in Public Policy and Administration is designed to develop a range of competencies needed to undertake sophisticated research in public policy and public administration. Fundamental to the development of these competencies is a mastery of subjects in multiple academic disciplines, including politics, economics and quantitative and/or qualitative methods in policy research. Built upon the diversity and strengths of academic departments and faculty distributed throughout the Trachtenberg School and the University community, the programs offers an exceptional education across these disciplines.