Student, Faculty, and Alumni Stories

January 04, 2019

“What if we ignite the communities that are the most invested in and affected by the failing schools - to identify the leaders, and give them the opportunity to tell us what it is they need?” - Lorena Camacho, 2018 Social Innovation Fellow Posterboards with detailed policy analysis, charts, and infographics covered the walls of the MPA office over the past month. The projects were the culmination of the social innovation fellowship, a year-long program for MPA students aiming to find creative ways to address social problems, beyond existing policies.  Fellows receive… Read More »
January 02, 2019

Older Vera is a skilled data analyst and experienced teacher with a passion for making education systems work for all students. He joined the MPA program to gain the skills and knowledge necessary to create policy research that will bring real changes in education policy. His summer internship taught him how to overcome the negativity of the current news cycle and find hope in the inspiring work of the advocates at Public Citizen. I arrived in Washington D.C. a week before my internship start date, giving me time to reflect on myself and my life. Having just finished another… Read More »
December 27, 2018

Project Explores Authentic Leadership Styles Based on Students’ Own Backgrounds In the fall, MPA students created a website to explore their own leadership styles by drawing on their unique experiences, strengths, and deeply held values. The student-led team effort was the final project for their Authentic and Adaptive Leadership course, a core requirement in the MPA program. Professor Rene Aubry gave the class an open-ended prompt, encouraging creativity, exploration, and collaboration. Students brainstormed collectively and decided to create a website,,… Read More »
December 20, 2018

Rob Bentlyewski worked for several progressive politicians before joining the MPA Program. He planned to use his MPA to establish a safe, comfortable career in government. Little did he know that his internship in the NY City Council during the height of the immigrant child separation crisis would inspire him to dedicate his career to defending people’s rights and upholding the integrity of public institutions, even if it meant sacrificing the calm and predictable path he had envisioned. The Manhattan Borough President hosted a roundtable and invited the staff of every elected… Read More »
December 13, 2018

In the MPA summer internship program, students engage in reflective practice that includes goal-setting, storytelling, supervisor feedback, infographics, and reflection papers. This process provides an opportunity for the internship to be a transformative professional experience, in addition to the traditional benefits of internships, such as skill development, relationship-building, and exposure to a new sector. “We take seriously the academic component of the internship,” said Natalia Trujillo, acting director of the MPA Program. “We push our students to be reflective… Read More »
November 15, 2018

On Wednesday evening, Dr. Adriana Espinosa gave an hour-long presentation followed by an in-depth discussion of how biased language in the workplace can influence women and racial and ethnic minorities' careers. Espinosa is a professor in CCNY's Department of Psychology who currently serves as scholar-in-residence at the Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service. The talk drew from Espinosa's extensive research on the underrepresentation of women and ethnic minorities in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)… Read More »
October 31, 2018

Sandra Fernando speaks about her path from the MPA program to the ACLU Sandra Fernando (MPA ’17) recently joined the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), a nonprofit organization that has defended civil rights in the courts, the legislature, and civil society for more than a century and today has 1.75 million members. While an MPA student, Sandra interned with the New York State Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic, and Asian Legislative Caucus through the prestigious Edward T. Rogowsky internship program. She also worked as an operations associate in several different offices at… Read More »
October 17, 2018

MPA students in Professor Brett Whysel’s economics course learn how individual financial decisions are connected to economic issues affecting our broader society, and they gain valuable decision-making skills to boot.   The interdisciplinary course integrates psychology, decision-making, and behavioral economics with the traditional concepts taught in public economics courses, such as externalities, public goods, and fiscal policy. Professor Whysel, who designed the course, draws on his background in philosophy and investment banking as well as his current role as co-founder of… Read More »
August 30, 2018

Dana Cohen, Ellen Ulerio, and Allison Wen created an innovative pilot program that offers blood pressure readings in public spaces in Queens. The project, which won the MPA Program's annual team competition, aims to address the high rate of heart disease and lack of access to health care in Elmhurst, Jackson Heights, and Corona. Through on-the-ground interviews and NYC open data research, the team investigated barriers to health access that distance these majority-immigrant neighborhoods from basic preventive services. These barriers include language, financial hardship, time… Read More »
July 10, 2018

Steven Molinari discusses his prestigious paid internship in the NY State Assembly Steven Molinari (MPA ’18) was the first MPA student from CCNY to be chosen for the graduate internship in the NY State Assembly, which comes with a $15,000 stipend. During his time in the MPA program, he interned in nonprofit advocacy groups as well as the city and state government, with support from the Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service. He found a moment to sit down with us and reflect on his career path as a policy analyst. What was most memorable about your internship? Being able… Read More »
Subscribe to Master's in Public Administration Blog Subscribe to Colin Powell School Blog