The Muskie School of Public Service is Maine’s distinguished public policy school, combining an extensive applied research and technical assistance portfolio with rigorous undergraduate and graduate degree and certificate programs in geography-anthropology; tourism and hospitality; policy, planning, and management (MPPM); and public health (MPH). The school is nationally recognized for applying innovative knowledge to critical issues in the fields of sustainable development and health and human service policy and management, and is home to the Cutler Institute for Health and Social Policy. The Muskie School and Cutler Institute engage in cross-disciplinary opportunities through the University of Maine Graduate & Professional Center, which brings together programs in business, law, policy, and public health. 

Overview of the School

In 1990, when the Edmund S. Muskie School of Public Service was named in his honor, Senator Muskie challenged students, faculty, and researchers to make a real difference in the lives of the people of Maine and the nation. Through its teaching, research and public service, the school is educating leaders, informing policy and practice, and strengthening civic life. In all its activities, the school carries on the values, ideals and contributions of Edmund S. Muskie as exemplified in his long and distinguished career as a public servant for Maine and the nation.

The school’s more than 200 faculty and research staff come from a wide variety of academic, public management, and direct service backgrounds, including geography, anthropology, economics, health and social policy, business, finance, psychology, social work, public health, law, public administration, public policy, environmental policy, and mental health. Approximately half the faculty hold joint teaching/research appointments.

Educating Leaders

Through the Muskie School’s interdisciplinary, problem-focused degree programs students develop competencies in public health, social and environmental policy, land use and urban planning, management, geographic information systems, archaeological analysis, tourism studies, and hospitality management. Visiting guest speakers, student’s work experiences, group assignments, and faculty research bring current events into the classroom and students into the halls of the legislature, town planning offices, health centers, and many other public, private, and nonprofit settings.

Informing Policy and Practice

The school’s extensive applied research programs directly contribute to organizational, program, and policy innovation and capacity. The school is increasingly recognized nationally for applying the university’s analysis and research resources to critical issues in the fields of health policy, child and family well-being, disability and aging, public sector management and innovation, sustainable planning, geographic information systems, environmental policy, and economic development.

The scope of faculty and research staff activities ranges from research and policy analysis, to training and technical assistance, to demonstration projects that design and test innovative program and policy strategies.

Strengthening Civic Life

Publications, reports, and conferences are direct outcomes of scholarship and research by the faculty, staff, and students and provide policymakers, practitioners and the general public with information and analysis to educate and inform decision-making and implementation. Public forums and events inform and engage the community and provide a non-partisan meeting ground for discussion and debate. Students have opportunities to attend, participate in, and contribute to the Muskie School’s expanding public outreach activities.