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This article features information about why you may want to earn a master’s degree in political management, as well as how it could improve your career prospects. We will describe what this master’s degree, so that you can decide if it is a degree for you. Also offered is information about potential careers, and an online program worth considering.
What Is a Master’s in Political Management?
A master’s in political management is an advanced degree that provides you with the skills needed to work in political campaign management effectively. This master’s level program is designed to prepare you for mid level and senior level political campaign positions, and to arm you with the tools needed to effectively manage local, state and national political campaigns.
A master’s degree in political management will teach you all of the tricks of the trade in top campaigns, will introduce you to working with consulting and media organizations and other important entities that are critical to modern campaigns.
Some of the core campaigning skills typically included in this type of master’s program include:
- Strong technical skills in data analytics, survey research and quantitative analysis
- Excellent understanding of how voters behave, advanced campaign strategies, how to use technology and social media successfully to win campaigns, the legalities of campaign finance and ethics.
- Courses are typically taught by top political consultants and leading academics who have years of work experience in campaigns at all levels
Why Earn A Master’s in Political Management?
Political management has become increasingly critical in the modern political era. Non-stop TV news and Internet coverage of politics and world events has changed the old 24 hour news cycle into a minute-by-minute new news reality. Political management is needed today to help modern candidates to get elected to office by effectively managing all of the modern realities of political campaigns.
A master’s degree in political management is needed more than ever today by political professionals who want to know how to build winning political efforts.
Most MPM degree programs today will provide students with essential knowledge in campaign management and strategy, with classes in these areas:
- Campaign strategy
- Organization and execution of political campaigns
- Strategic communications
- Advanced research techniques
- Federal and state government
With advanced, rigorous courses in these nuts and bolts aspects of political campaigns, you will be able to find work in many political campaigns. This master’s degree will put you in strong demand for many political operations at all levels of government. The Department of Education reports that at least 40,000 political science and related bachelor’s degrees were awarded in 2015. However, only 2,000 master’s degrees in political fields were awarded. Politics is a very competitive field, and having this master’s degree is a way to stand out from other campaign job applicants.
Professionals who want to have a career in government and/or political campaigns will be well served by earning this degree. Some of the common job titles for professionals with an MPM degree are:
- Campaign manager
- Communications manager
- Legislative aide
- Issue advocate
- Political consultant
- Political commentator
Some of the skills that you will learn with this degree that are vital for modern political campaign success include:
- Time management
- Reading comprehension
- Management of finances, material and personnel
- Critical thinking
Earning this master’s degree also can ensure that you will earn a healthy salary in your political career. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, political scientists can earn a salary of $114,000 per year, and survey researchers in politics and other fields earn a salary of $54,400 per year.
Online Degree Program Option
George Washington University offers a master’s degree in political management that will provide you with the skills needed to to win elections, advance important legislation and affect the opinions of the general public.
GWU’s program offers a hands-on, cutting edge curriculum in the heart of American government in Washington DC. It will teach you the how, rather than the what of politics. Graduates of this two year program learn the vital strategies, mechanics and tactics that win elections.
High Quality Educators with Political Campaign Experience
GWU’s faculty in political management are highly respected political professionals who have in the past helped to win office for presidents, senators, governors and representatives. Many of them have crafted advocacy initiatives, managed major political and communication organizations, and consulted for major candidates and companies.
This accredited program has several courses each term that are taught by former members of Congress. They share their experiences and expertise in running and winning political campaigns, how to advance legislation, and building a strong political and voting coalition.
Designed to Meet Specific Political Career Goals
GWU’s master’s program has several concentrations, depending upon what your career goals are. First, you are required to take the required core courses. Then, you can embark upon your specialty area:
- Fundamentals of Political Management
- Applied Political Communications
- Political Data and Analytics
- Principled Political Leadership
Concentration options include:
- Applied Proficiencies – for fundraisers, communications consultants and pollsters
- Advocacy Politics – for lobbyists, grassroots organizers, public affairs professionals
- Electoral Politics – for political managers
- Global Politics – for those who want to work in international politics and bodies
Alumni Are Political Leaders
After you graduate from this rigorous political management program, you will be ready to lead, create, and achieve your dreams. Many alumni of the program are current or past campaign managers for presidential and senatorial candidates, and also for various national and international senior political staff around the world.
Because the GWU program is based in Washington DC, students also have opportunities to network with many highly experienced political professionals and campaign workers. This can be highly valuable in developing one’s political campaign career.
Modern political campaigns are intensively competitive require managers who have tremendously broad skills in technology, analytics, communications, media, polling, writing, speaking and more. Professionals who want to lead successful political campaigns and work in related areas such as polling and lobbying would be advised to strongly consider this type of master’s degree.
- George Washington University. Master’s in Political Management. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://gspm.gwu.edu/political-management
- Political Scientist. (2015, Dec. 17). Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/political-scientists.htm