Over the span of six years, the Office of Continuing Education has seen an increase in student enrollment in the Texas Certified Public Manager (CPM) program. The program, a series of seven courses dedicated to building leadership and management positions in public services, is offered through SHSU in conjunction with the William P. Hobby Center for Public Service, and has become a hallmark program for the department.
Professor Don Moore has instructed the course for more than nine years, graduating 250 professionals from various levels of the program, and he says the potential for students to learn about their field in the midst of pursuing their careers in invaluable.
“The program is primarily concentrated on students who are in mid-to-upper-level management positions who are looking to sharpen their skills and expand their professional development into advanced positions of government,” Moore says. “Around 45 percent of our students are promoted post-graduation due to improved skill sets, experience, and overall understanding of government.”
UTMB Chief of Police Thomas E. Engells and City of Galveston Chief of Police Henry Porretto, graduates of the program, enjoyed the program so much that they made enrollment in the program mandatory for their personnel, Moore says.
As a result of the support and continued success of the program, SHSU has expanded its facilities to host the program at the City of Houston E. B. Cape Center and UTMB Galveston.
The program is offered to participating students one and a half days a month over the course of two months for one track, allowing working professionals to choose a time that best fits their schedule. Additionally, students may either complete the program in its entirety to receive their CPM certification or complete individual tracks based on their professional goals.
Individual tracks include:
Track 1: Public Personnel Administration
Topics include recruitment/selection, equal employment opportunity/affirmative action, performance evaluation, discipline/termination, health/safety, collective bargaining, classification, compensation, and employee benefits.
Track 2: Managing for Quality
Practices such as reengineering, Total Quality Management (TQM) and strategic planning will be explored in detail. The course will also focus on how a systems approach can help public administrators understand how organizations can improve their organizational operations.
Track 3: Organizational Communication
Topics include communicating with governing and overseeing bodies, overcoming barriers to effective communication and dealing with disagreement, conflict and groupthink. Improving oral and written communication skills will also be covered in this track.
Track 4: Public Finance and Budgeting
The basics of finance, budgeting and public sector accounting and auditing will be explored in detail. Additional topics include cutback management and economic development.
Track 5: Productivity and Program Evaluation
Benchmarking, program evaluation and the tools and techniques of public administration research will be explored. In addition, this track covers the basic principles of legal research.
Track 6: Information Systems for Managers
Tools and systems such as the Internet and online federal and state databases will be identified and discussed in detail. Additional topics include social networking, geographic information systems and information systems technology.
Track 7: Applied Projects Practicum
This track is the capstone of the CPM Program and will incorporate lessons and information provided in the other six tracks. Students must have completed at least one CPM course to sign up for this track.