Will SchwartzEast Greenbush, NY
What are your career goals / academic goals?
I have pursued a career in public service with a goal of improving the processes and functions of government, trying to make it more accessible to those who need help. Currently I oversee government relations for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority which is an exciting challenge. I hope to continue on a path where I get more into program and policy work, which I get to work on now in various capacities.
Why did you choose to pursue your graduate degree at Marist? Why did you choose to pursue this degree program?
The Marist MPA program was seemingly designed for someone like me. I was able to work full-time, begin a family, all while plugging away in the program. The degree was a natural next step in my academic career after working in the NYS Legislature for a number of years. I wanted to round out my understanding of public administration which the program helped me achieve.
Tell us about a project or course that was particularly meaningful to your professional development / academic development.
There were a number of classes that really were impactful in how I now perceive public administration, beginning with Intro to Public Administration. As equity has become such a common term in my field as we think about transportation equity, learning about Frederickson and others who introduced this concept into government was really important and I bring it with me to my work daily. Politics and Policy was also a fun class for me as it was mostly discussing what I do for a living!
Tell us about a meaningful experience you had at Marist as it pertains to your degree (whether that be with a Professor, Marist service, Scholarship opportunity, etc.).
The entire MPA faculty is top-notch. Drs. Melitski, Henderson, Dr. Z, Prof C, to name a few, take the time to really work with students either in the classroom or virtually. By the time I left the program it really felt like a family, and not just among my cohort.
What advice would you give to a student considering pursuing this degree at Marist?
Understand that you can do this. Don't look at the entire duration of the program, take it class by class. The nature of 8 week courses means you’re never too far from the finish line.