NC State
Bruce D. McDonald, III

Teaching Philosophy

My work as a teacher is driven by my desire to empower students to become leaders within public organizations, all the while remembering that the organizations that employ my students may vary in their goals and resources. I have four main strategies to achieve this end. First, I challenge my students to work hard, to tackle difficult questions, and confront the conventional understanding of the field. This prepares them to think critically and instills a work ethic that will carry forward into their career. Second, I train my students in the skills necessary for a career in public management. These skills will help the students succeed in the future, regardless of the problems with which they are faced. Third, I treat my students as individuals’ first, students second. By recognizing their diverse backgrounds, learning styles, and professional goals, I can work with each student to get the most out of his or her education.  Finally, I bring my enthusiasm and practitioner experience into the classroom, while at the same time showing students how the subject matter can be applied to real-world problems. This motivates students and engages them with the course material.

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Current Courses Being Taught

The Budgeting Process (PA 512)

Examination of generalized budgetary process used at all levels of government in the U. S. Understanding of the process based upon comprehension of institutions involved, roles of politicians and professionals and the objectives of budgetary systems. Focus also upon budgetary reforms and on Planning-Programming-Budgetary and Zero-Based Budgeting as management tools. (Syllabus)
Semester:   Fall and Spring
Offered:      N/A
Level:          MPA

Financial Management in the Public Sector (PA530)

Survey of financial practices and concepts in the public sector. Topics including public sector accounting, financial information systems, revenue projections, cash management and debt management. Emphasis upon case-based applications. (Syllabus)
Semester:   Spring, Odd Years
Offered:      2017
Level:          MPA

Budgeting and Financial Management (PA 764)

Examination of budgetary and financial management processes in governmental and nonprofit agencies. Budgetary and financial management theory, practice, and unanswered research questions. (Syllabus)
Semester:   Spring, Even Years
Offered:      2018
Level:          Ph.D.

Research Methods and Traditions (PA 798)

The course will explore a variety of topics, ranging from the philosophy of social science to tailoring a literature review. As we will discover, PA scholars approach the research craft from a variety of perspectives, though their underlying epistemic assumptions are often not made explicit. (Syllabus)
Semester:   Fall
Offered:      2017
Level:          Ph.D.