- What was your favorite part of being an ICMA Officer?
Being an ICMA officer gave me the opportunity to work closely with great colleagues, professors, alumni, and advisors, and was a great chance to practice collaboration among MPA programs. Our experiences certainly drove my commitment to local government.
- Where are you working now, and what are your responsibilities?
I work as a Human Services Program Consultant for Buncombe County Health and Human Services. My responsibilities vary widely, but generally focus on research and analysis of potential initiatives and external communication. I also have the opportunity to support the Buncombe County Service Foundation, a nonprofit entity that supports the programs of Buncombe County Government. I have worked on everything from implementing a staff-training portal to the coordination of meetings on housing and homelessness for our Board of Directors to leading results teams with staff to ensure efficiency and effectiveness.
- What part of your ICMA experience have you applied to your current job?
During my year as an ICMA officer, our group was still very new, and we were working hard to establish our roots as a top-notch student organization. This involved gathering a lot of input from students, faculty, and advisors on what events and topics would be useful. It meant we had a lot of research to do on what other chapters were doing that made them successful. And, it required follow-through to ensure our vision was achieved. In my current job, I work with a team in a similar capacity—gathering input and research and helping implement initiatives to ensure Buncombe County maintains high quality service for our citizens.
- What advice would you give to current MPA students that you wish someone had told you?
It’s going to work out! Yes, juggling grad school, work, assistantships, and personal commitments is tough! You might not land your dream job right away—but every single experience is preparing you in some way for what is to come. Keep pushing. Keep dreaming. Keep connecting. And keep preparing for job interviews!
- Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
In 10 years I will have 10 more years of experience working for an agency that puts quality and service first. I will have built valuable connections and skills that will continue propelling me forward. I love where I live and I love what I do, and I hope to be lucky enough to continue here as a public servant for many more years!