Voinovich School jumps in top U.S. public affairs programs rankings

Daniel Kington
April 4, 2018

Ohio University’s Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs is in a tie for 77th on the U.S. News and World Report’s list of the top public affairs graduate schools for 2019, advancing 19 steps from a tie for 96th in 2017.  

Jason Jolley, associate professor and MPA director at the Voinovich School, says the School’s dramatic, recent improvement is particularly impressive given the School’s youth.

“This increase in rank over such a short period of time is remarkable for a school that just celebrated its 10th anniversary,” Jolley said. “It is refreshing to see that the Voinovich School, an emerging college, is competitive with established programs such as Auburn, the New School, Northeastern and Louisville, which also ranked 77th.”

The Voinovich School’s founding dean, Mark Weinberg, attributed the School’s success to its focus on engaged scholarship, involving students in applied, multidisciplinary research to develop solutions to challenges facing communities in Ohio.

“The School’s unique approach brings together government, corporate, and nonprofit sectors, and involves students who work with faculty and staff to make a real difference in the region, state and nation,” Weinberg said. “I’m thrilled and honored that in the year of the Voinovich School’s tenth anniversary, the School is being recognized as an exemplary hub of public leadership and innovation.”

The Voinovich School’s primary focus areas include entrepreneurship and economic development, energy and the environment, and public and social engagement policy areas. In each of these areas, the School conducts applied research, provides services that address regional and state challenges of national significance and offers educational programming. Graduate programs include the Master of Science in Environmental Studies and the Master of Public Administration, provided in three formats including an Executive MPA designed for working professionals offered at OHIO’s Dublin Center,  an exclusively online MPA, and an on-campus MPA.

Undergraduates also benefit from the Voinovich School through participation in the Voinovich Undergraduate Research Scholars program, which provides high-performing students the opportunity to participate in applied research and work directly with the Voinovich School’s faculty and professional staff.

The Voinovich School was not the only OHIO program featured in the U.S. News and World Reports Best Graduate School rankings this year; 18 other OHIO programs in a wide variety of fields were also recognized. According to Ohio University President M. Duane Nellis, this reflects the University’s growing prestige.

“Ohio University is one of the nation’s premiere institutions and having so many of our schools and programs included in the U.S. News rankings demonstrates that,” Nellis said. “Strong leadership across the University has helped us continue to focus on providing a transformative education for our students and enhancing OHIO’s reputation on a world stage.”