If you care about your community and want to be a central part of advocating for programs, resources, and services that support local populations, state and local policy may be the career path for you! Though there are many political opportunities with state and local representatives, many nonprofit organizations operate on this level as well.
State and local policy is strongly tied to state and local government, and like state government, can also be a great entry point into the federal or international level of policy, government, or law as well as its own rewarding career path. State and local policy groups help to propose, create, and change policy that is then administered by the government, so job or internship experience in one area can easily translate to the other, and vice versa.
If you’re considering state and local policy as a career, make sure to check out the La Follette School of Public Affairs! They offer a certificate program for undergraduate students, as well as several master’s programs that can help kickstart your career in policy. Graduate degrees can be a great way to gain field-specific knowledge for a graduate career, but it’s often helpful to have some degree of work and internship experience before you decide on a program.