MPA-PNP - 2014
Why did you choose Wagner for graduate school?
I chose Wagner because of its diverse courses that balance theory with practice, its emphasis on building skills for solving real-world problems, and its deep connections to New York City. When I applied, I was interested in several different policy fields and was unsure of the exact career path I wanted to take, but I believed that Wagner could connect me to professors and opportunities that would help me explore my interests so I could shape my own journey. In particular, I wanted to build upon my background in digital media and technology and explore how those skills could be adapted to needs in the public sector.
How would you describe your experience as a Wagner student?
I was a full-time student that worked as a research assistant for a professor 10-20 hours a week depending on the semester / full-time over the summer. My experience was a mix of challenging quantitative classes, engaging theoretical and policy debates, and often complicated group projects, which provided me with a strong foundation so that I felt as though I could choose from a variety of professional roles after graduating.
How did your Wagner experience prepare you professionally for what you are doing today?
Taking varied classes, from Program Evaluation and Performance Measurement to Participatory Policymaking and Intelligent Cities, helped me to develop tangible skills while enhancing my strategic and creative thinking. My current role equally requires hard skills, such as data analysis and project management, and soft skills, such as relationship building and problem-solving. I am constantly adapting to new challenges, but feel secure as I take them on because I can fall back on the strong foundation I built upon at Wagner.