Hometown: Rochester, NY
Current Occupation: Resource Development & Communications Associate
How and why did you decide to apply for SUNY Brockport MPA program?
After my undergraduate graduation I made the decision of getting in the workforce to give me a sense of serious direction about my career path. I initially aspired to be a journalist, but over time I realized I just didn’t have the passion for it anymore or the drive for its extraneous scheduling. I knew that whatever I ended up doing my end goal was to help my community. After a brief career at a non-profit organization doing development work, I realized this was the path for me. I later started at a larger non-profit that offered lots of growing opportunity; I decided it was time for me to further my education and learn more about non-profits through experience and adequate study. I had been looking around at different programs in this region and when I compared the pros and cons, Brockport offered more pros–including flexibility, affordability, and its downtown location made it even better. I applied, met with Dr. Wright and a few weeks later got my acceptance letter! Best decision I have ever made!
What have you enjoyed most about the program so far?
I have thoroughly enjoyed the professors and my peers. I have been able to make great connections with people who share the same interests and mission as myself and its awesome. The professors make themselves easily accessible and you can tell that they have your best interests at heart. The culture of the program breeds success... it sets you up with all of the opportunities needed which in return has given me total confidence in my education.
What does your job entail?
I am currently the Resource Development & Communications Associate at PathStone Corporation, a local nonprofit here in Rochester, NY. My job duties entail fundraising through special events, event planning, graphic designing, marketing, and a ton of networking as a gist of what I do. It’s a lot of pressure and requires a high level of intricacy to details, but I think my experience tying into my education helps me navigate it exceptionally well.
What are your future goals?
Initially, I had goals of creating my own non-profit organization that catered specifically to the youth of the inner-city of Rochester. I feel morally responsible for this demographic because I am them and I understand the challenges and depth of work that needs to be done in order to break the cycle of poverty and lack of education/educational resources. Now, after being in school and working for a nonprofit I’ve come to realize that there are already “too many” nonprofits with this mission that could instead be revamped. I aspire to be a hybrid of some sort, possessing the qualities of both a “charismatic leader” and a “transformational leader”. My goal is to be a CEO, not for the title but for the position it would put me in – of being able to make legitimate change through true leadership. Another route I’ve considered taking is eventually running for Mayor of Rochester, NY. I guess I will see where I end up. I still have a lot of work to do, but I am prepared!