To the Class of 2021

My heartfelt and enthusiastic congratulations to all of you completing your master’s program, MHA and MPA, and graduating with the class of 2021! It is a commendable accomplishment and I know that your colleagues, teachers, and friends admire and respect you for your achievement. We are honored to have you as graduates of UNM’s School of Public Administration.

stokes2018During your journey, I am sure that all of you encountered obstacles and endured as you pushed through them, especially during the pandemic. Now is the time to look back on the road traveled and smile with satisfaction at how you overcame all impediments to get your degree. While today it may seem as if you began your studies only yesterday, at other times you probably thought reaching the goal of a master’s degree might take forever. Yet, you persevered and were able to collaborate with high-caliber classmates, learn from a world-class faculty, draw strength from your friends, and impress your co-workers. I am sure that throughout it all, the most essential element in your success was your family. Both you and we here at the School of Public Administration owe them profound gratitude for their support and sacrifice.

In this time of crisis, none of us are strangers to stress and sacrifice, especially those like you who have focused on the public good and the value of public service. I have no doubt that all of you will contribute to the recovery and prosperity of our city, our state, and our nation. As you go forward in your lives and careers, what you learned and experienced at the UNM School of Public Administration will serve you well and will never leave you. Likewise, you will never really leave the School of Public Administration – as master’s degree graduates you have joined a large, proud, and influential family.

UNM’s President Garnett Stokes often says the standard for Lobos is that, “Each of us defines all of us.” UNM is extremely fortunate to have the School of Public Administration’s Class of 2021 to help define it.

Again, my sincere congratulations on your graduation!


Bruce J Perlman
Director and Regents' Professor