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What jobs come to mind when you think of public service professions? Police
officers, firefighters, and community service advocates are likely responses. These
are all admirable public service careers, but there’s so much more than that. There
are many facets within the public service field that help keep our communities
and cities thriving.
service professionals are part of what many people call the ‘helping
professions,’” says Dr. Karla Drenner, Kaplan
University College of Social and Behavioral Sciences faculty
member. “These are the people that keep towns safe and defend our country
abroad. They maintain the health and happiness of American citizens while
pushing innovation and infrastructure to new heights. They ensure a bright
future for us all.”
you think you might be interested in working to help others and impact communities?
Many people are drawn to public service because they want to be involved with something
bigger than themselves. Fortunately, there are jobs to suit every personality,
with work available in fields like human services, psychology, public safety, and public administration.
Johnson, the U.S. secretary of homeland security, is a stellar example. He has
one of the most important public safety jobs in the nation: protecting the
lives of the American people. Johnson’s career started in law and included
several stints in public service, including serving as general counsel for the
Department of Defense. There, he paved the way for the reversal of the
military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy in 2010.
Another public service official painting a bright future
for all is Tammy Baldwin, United States Senator for Wisconsin. Baldwin shattered the state’s glass ceiling when she was elected
as its first female member of Congress, and she also became the nation’s first
openly gay senator. Throughout her career, she has been a strong advocate for fairness, equality, and opportunity.
in the government at any level provides an opportunity to make a difference
through public service. But helping profession opportunities aren’t limited to
the public sector. Another community steward who is working for real change is
Bob Aiken, CEO of Feeding America, a nonprofit with a mission to feed
all those in need of food in the U.S.
Considering nearly 16 million children face hunger, Aiken’s efforts are
making a real difference for kids across the country. His leadership and the work
of Feeding America’s network of community food banks serve an estimated 12
million or more children who would otherwise go hungry.
service leaders are making a change for those who deal with mental health
struggles. Clarissa Black, founder of Pets for Vets, is a great example. After witnessing the powerful role therapy dogs played
in recovery for veterans and soldiers, she founded her organization in order to
make an impact. Her passion for working with animals and her own experience
with post-traumatic stress disorder allow her to help others heal physical and
you want a satisfying career in which you can make a real change like these
public service leaders, Kaplan University’s Center for Public Service offers professional development and career
advancement resources that can help prepare those who want to transition into
the helping professions. Visit ShineOnPublicService.KaplanU.edu to explore a
special series of video and content recognizing these leaders in public service just in time for several national awareness
dates this month, including Public
Service Recognition Week, International Firefighters' Day and National Police Week. You can also recognize those you see as key figures
in public service today on social media with the hashtag #ShineOnPublicService.
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