Michael Keeney and Tami Mitchell, both 2012 graduates of the Center for Public Administration and Policy, part of the School of International and Public Affairs in College of Architecture and Urban Studies at Virginia Tech, have been named Presidential Management Fellows by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM).
The honor makes the pair among the roughly 10 percent of applicants to the fellowship program to be named a Fellow nationally.
The Presidential Management Fellow (PMF) program is described by the OPM as “the flagship leadership development program at the entry level for advanced degree candidates.” The three-decade old program seeks to train future government leaders by giving fellows 160 hours of formal classroom training in leadership, management, policy, and other topics and then places them in positions in a federal agency. Fellows are mentored and given feedback on their work over the course of their two-year appointment.
The Center for Public Administration and Policy nominated four students for the PMF program for 2012. A total of 628 individuals nationwide were named 2012 finalists out of approximately 9,000 nominees.
"Our 36 percent finalist success rate over the last two years is quite remarkable," said Brian Cook, professor and chair of the center. "We know our students are good, and we hope to encourage another strong group to become nominees for next year's selection process."
Keeney, who received his Ph.D. in public administration and public affairs this year, has accepted a position as a budget analyst with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration in Washington, D.C. Mitchell, who also received a Ph.D. in public administration and public affairs, will be working for the Infrared Space Systems Directorate at Los Angeles Air Force Base. Both praised the highly structured PMF preparation the center’s faculty provided as critical to their success in the rigorous finalist selection interviews and competition for available positions.
“Participation in the PMF program provides a tremendous opportunity to do meaningful work while gaining practical experience as part of the Air Force’s space acquisition community,” Mitchell said.
The Center for Public Administration and Policy offers a Ph.D. in public administration and public affairs in Blacksburg and Alexandria, and a Master of Public Administration degree in Blacksburg, Alexandria, and Richmond. It is ranked in the top ten percent of public affairs programs nationally, and is ranked 13th nationally in the public management administration specialty, according to U.S. News & World Report.