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Photo It is an honor to work with PAA members because they always represent themselves and our program with distinction. John McCaskill, PAA Advisor - The University of Texas at Dallas
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3rd Annual Voinovich Public Innovation Challenge

Posted 07/18/2019


3rd Annual Voinovich Public Innovation Challenge 

Your NASPAA Institution is invited to join a ‘pitch competition’ in honor of the late Sen. George V. Voinovich. He believed creativity and innovation were critical to effective public service, declaring “the government’s highest calling is to empower people and galvanize their energy and resources to help solve our problems, meet our challenges, and seize our opportunities.” 
Open configuration optionsSen. George Voinovich The Voinovich Public Innovation Challenge is an annual event that highlights exciting new strategies for enhancing student education, addressing unmet needs, advancing knowledge, and/or improving programmatic efficiency or effectiveness.

If your innovative approach to teaching, community engagement, research, or administration is selected as one of the three finalists, you will receive:

  • An opportunity to present your idea at the 2019 NASPAA Annual Conference
  • A chance to win a $3,500 award to launch or further develop your innovation


To apply, interested faculty or professional staff must:

  • Have developed an innovative approach to enhance students’ education, address an unmet need, advance understanding in the field, and/or improve programmatic efficiency or effectiveness.
  • Create a two-page written overview, telling us what you are doing and how it works. Submission deadline: August 15, 2019.
  • Be prepared to give a short presentation of your idea and answer questions posed by a panel of expert judges at the 2019 NASPAA Annual Conference October 16-19, 2019 in Los Angeles, CA, if you are selected for the finalist pool.


NASPAA’s Executive Director, Laurel McFarland, and Ohio University’s Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs Dean, Dr. Mark Weinberg, conceived of this competition as a commemoration of their mutual friend and colleague, Senator George V. Voinovich (July 15, 1936- June 12, 2016), whose nearly half-century of public service was a living example of servant leadership. He encouraged others to design and deliver practical solutions to challenging public problems, to expand higher education public-private partnerships, and, most importantly, to educate, mentor and develop people engaged in public service from every sector and walk of life. 

Questions and applications can be submitted to: 
Kate Leeman, Voinovich School Director of Strategic Initiatives, at

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