The Government and Public Administration career cluster involves national and state government agencies and local government offices, the armed services, and elected offices that run city, county, tribal, state, and national governments.
A primary goal of virtually all careers in public service is to help improve the quality of life and livelihood for the citizens represented, while supporting the betterment of the overall community.
The federal government deliberates and passes laws and administers a large number of programs. Among other roles, its agencies are responsible for strengthening the economy, representing U.S. interests abroad, national security, determining how natural resources are used, taxation, and establishing and enforcing regulations for many industries and products. Federal jobs are influenced by public policy priorities set by the President and Congress.
State and local governments cover similar ground at their respective levels. Citizens elect state and local leaders who determine priorities and make decisions affecting their constituencies.
Activities of state and local government offices include passing laws and ordinances, providing vital services such as public education, police and fire departments and parks, collecting taxes, managing budgets, enforcing laws and ordinances, and protecting the environment.
Quick facts to know:
- About 1.6 million people work in civilian occupations in this cluster.
- There are currently approximately 1.3 million active-duty personnel in the U.S. Armed Forces, who work in more than 800 different jobs.
- Increasing population in many localities, along with growing demand for public services, is fueling higher than average employment growth in this cluster over the next 10 years.
- Regulatory and compliance careers are growing within this cluster, and impact large-scale public issues such as lending practices or anti-corruption work in government.