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Why Policy Studies??


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The board is so inundated with school specific posts right now, I thought I might shift discussion a bit and pose the question: what first made you interested in public policy/administration/IR, whatever your respective field is? What sort of policy work makes you feel all giddy, tingly, and excited inside?

I started out being involved in a LGBTQA political organization on campus. We focused mostly on campus related issues, but a big thing happened my junior year: the women's basketball coach was accused of discriminating against a player on the basis of sexual orientation and the University found her guilty. It opened up a can of worms and a whole history of discrimination revolving around the coach was brought to light. The group I was in held rallies and community discussions around the issue, but I realized I was most interested in the legal and policy aspects of the case, a former player had filed a law suit against the coach. Learning about university policies and local and state laws that shaped issues of discrimination was really fascinating for me and I eventually started getting involved in policy discussions that dealt with other university and community issues as well. I joined student government, had an internship with Amnesty International, all of it contributing to my growing interest in policy related things. A some point during my second senior year (lol) I found grad programs in policy and realized that my academics (I studied psych as an undergrad) and extracurriculars didn't have to be separate any longer! It is a pretty awesome moment, when you have that sort of "Aha!I know what I want to do and I'm really excited about it!!!" revelation.

My work in policy hasn't been very academic or theoretical, but very hands on, so I'm just excited in general to be able to go to school and formally work with scholars and peers who are interested in the same thing I am.

So...what about everyone else?.....

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