Master’s of Public Administration
Bill works as the Storm Water Engineer for the City of Beloit, Wisconsin. He enrolled at UIS to gain new skills that will help him make a difference in his organization.
Looking back at his academic work, he is particularly pleased with his capstone project, a policy analysis on implementing the Rock River TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load).
In layman’s terms, a TMDL (according to the Sierra Club) is “an analysis that reports the maximum amount of pollutant which a water body can receive without water quality standards being violated or the use of the water body for activities like swimming, fish consumption, aquatic life support, and public water supply being inhibited.”
Bill says that implementing a TMDL can be very costly and must therefore be done with great care: “The project forced me to put aside my bias and look into all options to find the best solution. In the end, the research confirmed the implementation strategy we were using.”
Bill will be quick to recommend UIS online to other students who want to get a quality education at an affordable price. “The program is set up to make completing courses convenient,” he says. “You do not have to spend time commuting or have set hours that you must devote to the program.”
Bill has also appreciated the students he has met through the UIS MPA program. “They come from all walks of life,” he says, “and it has been nice learning from other students as much as the professors. Most of the students have full time jobs. They work in so many different fields, and everyone brings a new perspective to the discussion groups and projects.”
The one thing he would change about his online classes is this: “I would make more of them blended,” he says. “Blended classes allow online students to interact as if they were an on ground student, and I feel the interaction of a blended class is more valuable than pre-recorded lectures and discussion boards.”
Now that he has his Master’s degree, Bill does not plan to pursue any additional degree programs, but he does want to learn more about employment law and spend more time outside hiking. He also plans to spend time cooking dinner again: “My wife has been cooking dinner so I could focus on school in the early evening.”
Advice Bill frequently gives: “Don’t worry so much. Just relax and enjoy life.”