York University helps drive growth in Canada’s public policy landscape

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In an increasingly complex world facing daunting challenges from climate change to geopolitical conflicts, the need for skilled policymakers has never been greater. Crafting effective policies to tackle these multifaceted problems requires a deep understanding of systems, the ability to bridge diverse stakeholder interests and a commitment to the public good. As governments grapple with these pressing issues, the demand for graduates of York University’s School of Public Policy & Administration (SPPA) are meeting the need head-on.

Fausto Natarelli
Fausto Natarelli

“Founded over 40 years ago, SPPA is one of the largest and most respected public policy programs in Canada,” says Fausto Natarelli, an SPPA adjunct professor. “The school has been at the forefront of training the next generation of public servants, equipping graduates with the knowledge and skills to make a real difference in communities across Canada and around the world,”

Since its inception in the early 2000s, the Master in Public Policy Administration & Law (MPPAL) program has played a pivotal role in driving this expansion, swiftly rising to become one of Canada’s largest graduate programs in public policy studies. “Designed for working professionals, it offers a flexible, part-time executive format tailored to the needs of both public and private sector professionals,” says Natarelli, himself an early graduate.

SPPA and MPPAL alumni are actively addressing today’s most pressing issues, from pandemic preparedness to economic recovery and social justice. The COVID-19 crisis has only underscored the value of their expertise, as governments grapple with the fallout.

The pandemic revealed weaknesses in health-care systems and exacerbated inequalities, highlighting the urgent need for effective policy responses. Economic downturns left millions unemployed and businesses struggling, further emphasizing the importance of sound policymaking in times of crisis.

As the world seeks to recover and rebuild, SPPA and MPPAL alumni are playing a crucial role in shaping resilient policies and driving positive change. From developing strategies to prevent and respond to future pandemics, to designing economic recovery plans that create jobs and support vulnerable populations, to crafting policies that promote equity and social justice – SPPA and MPPAL graduates are putting their education into practice.

“Our graduates are making a real impact across government, non-profits and the private sector,” affirms Natarelli, citing the diverse career paths of alumni, who benefited from the summer paid internship and practicum placements.

“Their success speaks to the enduring relevance of SPPA in shaping the future of public policy and administration.”

For more information, visit the School of Public Policy & Administration website.