PA Connections

Mentoring and Networking to Thrive in Public Administration

Interested in Mentorship, Networking, and Leadership?

Join us at PA Connections

In response to feedback from its members, ASPA NCAC launched a new program to provide networking, mentoring, and professional development opportunities.

Led by Co-chairs Billy Leiserson and Pamela Foster, PA Connections has been busy during the past month. In October, we sponsored a panel discussion on mentorship, where we had a lively discussion on topics such as finding a mentor, qualities of a good mentor and mentee, and networking techniques. We held our first organizational meeting two weeks later on Nov 2nd. Both events were met with an enthusiastic reception from ASPA members. This may not be too surprising given that PA Connections was formed in response to members’ comments at the 2016 Annual Meeting, but it confirmed there is genuine interest in programming of this kind.

PA Connections is hosting a series of monthly meetings that will take place on the second Thursday of the month. Please mark your calendar. At these meetings, we will seek input about the resources, events, and activities members would find most useful. From this discussion, we will work together to come up with a unified vision of what we are trying to accomplish, an implementation plan, and a plan for how we will measure success.

A list of upcoming events can be found here. We hope to see you there!

PA Connections Is Having an Impact on Programming

The PA Connections planning group has already met twice this year. At these meetings, members have provided input on a wide range of topics related to networking, mentoring, and professional development. This input has already had an impact. The executive board is putting together several professional development events for the coming year—one has already taken place. Last month, Bill Shields hosted an event on how to build a resume to better market yourself. In the coming months, look for a follow-up on writing effective cover letters and an event on being resilient in the face of uncertainty. Following suggestions from PA Connections members, organizers will format all NCAC events to facilitate meaningful networking, e.g., by ending the speaking portion of the event in time for networking to occur afterwards when feasible. This networking time may feature informal round-table discussions with speakers, one-on-one networking, or focus-groups. Upcoming events can be found here.

If you have ideas for these or other events, we want to hear from you! You can reach the PA connections team (Billy and Pamela) at aspancacmentoring@gmail.com or post to our new discussion forums.

Information for our Next Planning and Networking Meeting can be found here.

PA Connections monthly organizational meetings serve to create: a unified vision of the group’s goals, an implementation plan, and a plan for how we will measure success. If you are interested in helping chart the future of this group, please contact us at aspancacmentoring@gmail.com.

The Registry is LIVE!

The PA Connections Registry is now live! The Registry is for people who would like to connect with others for informational interviews, career advice, and mentoring. (Only those who have signed up will have access to others in the Registry.) If you are interested in participating in the registry, email PA Connections at aspancacmentoring@gmail.com.

We need to hear from you!

Whether you are interested in serving on the Steering Committee, would like to provide input on the topic, would like to identify yourself as part of the mentoring community, or have questions, please contact Billy Leiserson and Pamela Foster at aspancacmentoring@gmail.com.

We need your help curating!

The success of Shared Resources depends on you! The value of Shared Resources will come from members selecting useful and helpful material. Your input is what will distinguish Shared Resources from the results of a Search Engine. We need help from all corners to ensure we have a site that serves the diversity of our membership. If you are interested in helping curate the Shared Resources site, please email us at aspancacmentoring@gmail.com.

What is the PA Connections group?

We are public servants interested in leveraging mentorship to become more effective in our jobs and more adept at managing our careers.

What is the Goal of PA Connections?

We formed the group to bring together people interested in learning, teaching, and sharing about mentorship. The group will provide a forum for discussion on topic of mentorship: what is its purpose? why should I seek mentors or mentees? how do I find mentors or mentees? what are some best practices for managing a mentoring relationship? While mentorship provides the focus, the group will also engage around other important tools for managing careers, such as networking and professional development.

Who should join PA Connections?

Anyone interested in furthering their careers and becoming more effective through better mentorship and networking. Whether you are new to the public administration workspace, a mid-career professional, or a seasoned veteran, this group is for you!

What does the group do?

Host speakers, provide forums for discussion, serve as a resource exchange, and much more. We envision that the programming will be tailored to the interests and needs of the group, but check out these talks to get an idea of the kinds of topics we find interesting: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87qjIZRkkio; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=02EJ1IdC6tE; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Po-QOVodPhU.

How do I learn more, and how do I join?

If you want more information or would like to join, please email Billy and Pamela at aspancacmentoring@gmail.com.