Brian Ulbricht is no stranger to public service. Prior to joining the Master of Public Administration (MPA) cohort, he was a Sergeant in the U.S. Army. Enlisting after high school, Brian spent almost ten years as a Military Police (MP) officer. “I chose the military, because I just wasn’t ready for college at 18 years old.” The military provided opportunities for service, education, and to see the world. Brian received his Associate Degree while still on active duty. He also traveled the world while being stationed across the country, in Europe, and with a deployment to the middle east.

Brian was always serving, regardless of whether he was in uniform. After leaving the service, he attended a university in the Pacific Northwest. During his time there, Brian was active with the Student Veterans Association (SVA) and is looking forward to getting more involved with UGA’s Student Veterans Resource Center

Brian has professional skills that many people develop later in their careers, including leadership and problem solving, much of which he cultivated during his time in service. As an undergraduate student, he identified organizational flaws at his university, such as a lack of inclusivity. “There was an organization that had a lack of diversity in a chapter that historically had a lot of female input and leadership. We developed a plan to bring female leadership back into the program.”

He chose UGA’s MPA program because it had the most appeal for his career goals. “I’m hoping to gain a more advanced knowledge set on public administration, because I wanted to focus more on local government in the southern part of the U.S.” Out of the schools across the country that he could have attended, Brian says that he chose Georgia for the people. “I enjoyed my time in Georgia when I was stationed at Ft. Stewart. People were very welcoming when I came back from Afghanistan. This is a community and group of people that I would want to be a part of.”

Brian’s military service in the U.S. Army instilled a love of serving that is still with him today. He anticipates learning more about local governments in Georgia during his time at UGA. When asked how he is looking to serve next, he said “ideally to one day be a city or county manager.”

Brian Ulbricht is a candidate for a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree at the University of Georgia’s School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA).