Week 4: Conversations and Commitment to Public Service

Week 4: Conversations and Commitment to Public Service

This week the Department of Public Policy (DPP) engaged with individuals committed to social change.


  • On Tuesday, we visited Communication classes in Storrs and spoke about the Fast-Track and Master of Arts in Survey Research (MASR) programs. Our Outreach Coordinator Lian also met with prospective students. If you would like to meet with a DPP representative on your campus, please email Lian at


  • Our first newsletter of the year arrived in email inboxes on Wednesday. We recently went through a redesign that highlights accomplishments of various members throughout the DPP Network. If you would like to receive our triannual letter, please email


  • For our Thursday social media post we highlighted an event on Friday! This semester the DPP is looking to highlight different events in the community to share with our followers. Have an event you would like to share? Let our Outreach Coordinator Lian know at


  • We concluded the week with our first Public Service Executive Leadership Collaborative (PSELC) of the semester on Friday. Members of the DPP Network also participated in the Youth Climate Strike Rally on Friday at the State Capitol in Hartford.


Next week we will be at Eastern Connecticut State University and UConn Storrs for various information sessions and recruitment events. Check out our Instagram @UConnDPP to learn more!

Welcome from the Department of Public Policy


Welcome from the Department of Public Policy

Annual DPP Welcome Back Reception in Zach's Atrium
2019 DPP Annual Welcome Back Reception

A few days ago we held our annual Department of Public Policy Welcome Back reception. The 150 students, alumni, faculty, staff and community partners added to our excitement about what our community of faculty, students and alumni accomplished last year and what we are well positioned to accomplish this coming academic year.

We had a very successful 2018-2019 academic year. The 2020 U.S. News and World Report rankings of public affairs programs placed us again in the top 50 among public affairs programs and top 10 among public budgeting and finance specialty areas. Many thanks to our faculty, students and staff who helped us maintain these top rankings. We have been regularly posting news about our student, faculty and staff achievements on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram). Follow us on any or all of these media if you have not already done so. We promise to not disappoint.

Last year, we relaunched the MPA Fellows program as a Saturday cohort program. Our current and incoming Fellows cohorts are full, and have a diverse and exceptional record in public service. This Fall we welcome 80 new students to our MPA, MPA Fellows, MPP, and MASR programs – which is a record number of incoming students in our Department.

Thanks to our alumni and community partners, our Internship and Professional Practice program is also seeing record engagement this year. Our welcome luncheon for Internship supervisors reminded us of the importance of these community partners to DPP. It also reminded us of the value that our interns add to the professional community that we serve. This academic year, our interns will spend a total of 30,825 hours working in these placements. Our internship program is central to our community engagement.

Our mentoring program engaged many of our alumni in its first year and is off to an excellent start this year. If you are interested in joining that program, please email Candace Fitzpatrick. As a token of appreciation for their efforts, our mentors will also enjoy free enrollment in any Public Service Executive Leadership Collaborative workshop when they accompany their mentees to that workshop.

We will continue to post all job announcements on our alumni LinkedIn and Facebook pages. Because we realize that many alumni might miss these announcements, our staff are launching a new moderated career listserv as a service to our students, alumni and regional employers. If you have a position announcement to make, please email it to and we will forward to the listserv and post to our social media. We would appreciate you letting your HR staff know that we have this free service. We automatically added all current students and recent graduates (2 years out) to the listserv. All our alumni are also welcomed to join. If you would like to receive these job announcements, please join the listserv by:

  1. Sending an e-mail to LISTSERV@LISTSERV.UCONN.EDU
  2. Leaving the subject blank
  3. Entering in the body of the e-mail this command, filled in with the respective information:
    1. To subscribe: SUB DPP_CAREERS-L Firstname Lastname
  4. We will be very careful to only send relevant career announcements to this listserv, and every message we send will give you the option to unsubscribe if you wish to do so.

Last year, we launched the Public Service Executive Leadership Collaborative, which brought professional development opportunities to our alumni and the State’s public service community. In its inaugural program, we enrolled more than 150 trainees in the first 6 workshops. The reviews were excellent. This coming year, the Collaborative is offering 9 workshops, and we are able to continue to offer our alumni a 50% discount.

Encore!Connecticut has now been redesigned to accommodate private sector working professionals who are interested in future public service careers. The new program will be run over four Saturdays in March-May 2020 with fellowships running through the end of June 2020. If you wish to recommend a friend or colleague for this program, please let Dave Garvey know.

We are also very excited to welcome some new faces to our Department in 2019-2020. Dr. Yusun Kim (Syracuse University) will join our faculty. Maura Maloney has joined our staff as an operations coordinator. Three exceptional public servants will also join our adjunct faculty: Matthew Hart (Town Manager, Town of West Hartford), Penny Davis (Chief Human Resources Officer, CT Department of Social Services), and Paul Sullivan (Sr. Vice President, American Red Cross).

We are all looking forward to an excellent 2019-2020.


Mohamad G. Alkadry, Ph.D.

Professor & Department Head






DPP Begins Search for Assistant Professor of Nonprofit Management

Job application graphic image
Job Description: Assistant Professor of Nonprofit Management (PDF)

DPP Begins Search for Assistant Professor of Nonprofit Management

(PDF version)

The Department of Public Policy (DPP) at the University of Connecticut seeks to fill a tenure track position at the rank of Assistant Professor starting in August 2020. The Department of Public Policy is home to a NASPAA-accredited Master of Public Administration (MPA), a Master of Public Policy (MPP), an on-line Graduate Program in Survey Research, a MPA Fellows program (an executive MPA cohort), and four graduate certificates in nonprofit management, public financial management, survey research and leadership and public management. The Department offers an undergraduate minor and allows selected students to begin taking graduate courses while undergraduates. The successful candidate is expected to maintain a strong research program in their field.

The Department of Public Policy is located on the new state-of-the-art campus in Hartford, Connecticut’s capital city. The University of Connecticut is a premier research institution, designated as a Research University/Very High research activity by the Carnegie Foundation. UConn is ranked 22nd by U.S. News & World Report among national public universities in the United States. The Department’s public affairs programs are ranked 9th in public budgeting and finance and 47th among public affairs programs. The Department of Public Policy has 15 full-time faculty, 200 graduate students, and 1,100 alumni.

The successful candidate’s primary teaching assignment will be to offer core and elective classes in the MPA and MPP programs, including courses in the management, design, and evaluation of nonprofit programs. The specific teaching assignment will be determined based on the interests of the candidate and the needs of the Department, and can include graduate or undergraduate classes.


Minimum qualifications include an earned Ph.D. in public administration, public policy, economics, political science, sociology, philanthropy or a related field. Candidates must have a strong record of, or strong potential for, scholarly excellence based on rigorous social science research methods. Candidates must demonstrate strong communication skills and the capability to teach courses in nonprofit management and other courses supporting our MPA, MPP, and certificate in nonprofit management curricula. Successful applicants must complete all requirements for the Ph.D. prior to the start date. Candidates already appointed at the Assistant Professor level are encouraged to apply. Applicants with advanced ABD’s will be considered at the Instructor level until their Ph.D. requirements are completed.


The ideal candidate will have a proven track record, or demonstrated potential, of scholarly success in the management, financial management, analysis, or evaluation of nonprofit organizations and programs. Preference will be given to candidates with a record of or strong potential for obtaining external research support. Strong preference will be given to applicants who are comfortable with a wide array of analytical methods. Finally, the best candidates will provide clear evidence of contributions to the diversity and excellence of the learning experience through research, teaching, and/or public engagement.


This is a full-time, 9-month, tenure track position with an anticipated start date of August 23, 2020. The successful candidate’s academic appointment will be at the Hartford Campus. Faculty may also be asked to teach at UConn’s main campus in Storrs, or online as part of their ordinary workload. The University offers a highly competitive salary commensurate with qualifications and experience.


Use this link to be redirected to Academic Jobs Online to complete your application. Please submit a letter of interest, current curriculum vitae, a teaching statement, and recent teaching evaluations (if available), and contact information for three references (email, phone number, and mailing address) who can comment on research and teaching capabilities and accomplishments. Review of applicants will begin on October 4, 2019 and will continue until the position is filled.

Any questions about the position may be sent to Mark Robbins, Search Committee Chair, Department of Public Policy at

Employment of the successful candidate is contingent upon the successful completion of a pre-employment criminal background check. (Search #2020124)

This position will be filled subject to budgetary approval.

All employees are subject to adherence to the State Code of Ethics, which may be found at

The University of Connecticut is committed to building and supporting a multicultural and diverse community of students, faculty and staff. The diversity of students, faculty and staff continues to increase, as does the number of honors students, valedictorians and salutatorians who consistently make UConn their top choice. More than 100 research centers and institutes serve the University’s teaching, research, diversity, and outreach missions, leading to UConn’s ranking as one of the nation’s top research universities. UConn’s faculty and staff are the critical link to fostering and expanding our vibrant, multicultural and diverse University community. As an Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity employer, UConn encourages applications from women, veterans, people with disabilities and members of traditionally underrepresented populations.

Alumni Promotions and Career Changes: Fall 2019

Alumni Promotions and Career Changes: Fall 2019


UConn Department of Public Policy LogoAlong with excellent job placement for our Class of 2019, our alumni from previous classes are being promoted and taking on leadership roles at different organizations. 

Throughout the summer we posted a few of these alumni on Instagram and Twitter. Below is a list of their career changes!


Master of Public Administration

  • Jessica Inacio (2017): Strategic Development Coordinator, City of Fort Worth – Texas
  • Tyla Potvin (2017): Configuration Manager, Collins Aerospace – Connecticut
  • Ryan Kliszewski (2018): Associate Quality Specialist, GLX Constructors – Massachusetts
  • Elica Atanasovska (2017): Renewals Account Manager, License Logix – California
  • Ashley Bodamer (2018): Program Manager, Hartford Healthcare – Connecticut
  • Fuinnuala Darby-Hudgens (2018): Director of Operations, CT Fair Housing – Connecticut

Master of Public Policy

  • Diego Briones (2018): Economics PhD Candidate, University of Virginia – Virginia

Have you been promoted recently? Have you started working for a new organization? Do you have a job posting you would like us to share with our alumni network? Let us know at

The Class of 2019! Where Are They Now?


The Class of 2019! Where Are They Now?

2019 MPA and MPP Graduates in front of the Hartford Times Building
2019 MPA and MPP Graduates in front of the Hartford Times Building

For a number of years our department has proudly announced a 100% job placement rate within six month of graduation. The class of 2019 is on track to match our previous years statistics!

Throughout the summer we posted a few of the job placements for the class of 2019 on Instagram and Twitter. Below is a list of those placements! 





Master of Public Administration

  • Alecia Alleyne: Marketing Coordinator, Town of Franklin – Massachusetts 
  • Fabiola Bachinelo: Accreditation Associate, NASPAA – Washington, D.C.
  • Mariah Brennan Nanni: PhD Candidate, Syracuse University – New York
  • Franklin Edrich: Project Analyst, City of South Fulton – Georgia 
  • Dan Innes: Leadership Associate, Office of Policy and Management – Connecticut 
  • Josh Kelly: Town Administrator, Town of Bolton – Connecticut

Master of Public Policy

  • Hannah Casey: Environmental Specialist, Dominion Energy – Virginia
  • Shub Dhakal: Assistant Underwriter, Beazley – Georgia 
  • Sneha Jayaraj: Performance Management & Equity Fellow, City of Portland – Oregon
  • Bailey Mulqueen: Budget Analyst, Office of Policy and Management – Connecticut
  • Alex Tomczuk: Analyst, PFM Financial Advisors, LLC – Minnesota 

Have you been promoted recently? Have you started working for a new organization? Do you have a job posting you would like us to share with our alumni network? Let us know at

Week 1 Recap: Welcome Back!

Week 1 Recap: Welcome Back!

The Department of Public Policy (DPP) was happy to welcome over 80 new students to our graduate programs this fall semester. We have had a fantastic 3rd Annual Welcome Reception following New Student orientation on Thursday, August 22nd. At the reception, our new students not only had a chance to get to know each other but to meet the faculty, staff, alumni, and dear friends of the department. Over 150 people were in attendance!

2019 DPP Annual Welcome Back Reception
2019 DPP Welcome Back Reception

Monday began the first official week of classes at UConn. The DPP was busy all week, with over 35 courses taught this semester in Hartford, Storrs, and online! Our new students had an eventful week, starting with either Introduction to Public Policy and Management in Storrs with Professor Raissian or Applied Quantitative methods with Dr. Wilson in Hartford. Additionally, DPP is offering an exciting wide variety of MPP and MPA electives this fall, with options ranging from Social Policy, Diversity Planning and Policy, and Public Investment Analysis, to name a few!

On Wednesday this week, UConn Hartford hosted a Taste of Front Street event to welcome new and returning students. Ted’s Montana Grill, Bear’s Smokehouse BBQ, Blind Pig Pizza, Rush Bowls, Spotlight Theater Front Street, Starbucks, and El Pollo Guapo provided tasty treats and entertainment.

It is our great pleasure to introduce officers of the GAPPS-ICMA. The President of the Association, Carol Miranda, is an MPP student whose career aspirations are concentrated around lobbying or working with data and policy analysis. Vice President Rachel Dzialo is an MPA student who is interested in criminal justice policy and re-entry services. Treasurer Haley Turner Gillman is an MPP student who hopes to focus her career in consulting and program evaluation.  Secretary Steven Della-Giustina is an MPP student with a career focus in political organizing. We are excited to see what our GAPPS-ICMA Officers have in store for us this year! If current students are interested in joing GAPPS-ICMA or learning more about the group, please join their first meeting on Monday, September 9th at 3PM in HTB 406.

Each academic year, the Department of Public Policy front desk is staffed by DPP students. This year, we are happy to welcome three new Student Administrative Assistants! Haley Turner Gillman is an MPP student who received her B.A. in Sociology from the Saint Anslem College. Olena Nagorna is an MPA student who graduated from UConn Stamford with a B.A. in History. Alexandra Thomas is an MPP, and a graduate of the UConn Storrs, she received her B.A. in Political Science. They are in the office from 9 am – 4 pm every weekday and more than happy to assist. Stop by and say hello!

The Year Ahead – Encore!, Interns, Mentorship


The Year Ahead – Encore!, Interns, and Mentorship


For nearly a decade, Encore!Hartford and Encore!Fairfield County have assisted over 100 professionals transition to managerial careers in the Connecticut nonprofit sector. After nearly a decade of success we have retooled the program to meet the needs of Connecticut’s transitioning professional — as Encore!Connecticut.

Encore!Fairfield County Fellows
Encore!Fairfield County Fellows

The redesign will provide a Saturday format in order to allow individuals with varying goals to engage and benefit from this nationally awarded and recognized nonprofit career program (see New York Times and Hartford Business Journal articles).

“Since year one of stating the program we have consistently received calls from employed individuals asking for training to transition to management jobs in the nonprofit sector. For nine years, Encore!Hartford and Encore!Fairfield County were day-time programs tailored to the unemployed, but were inaccessible to employed individuals seeking to prepare for nonprofit work in the future. With the new Saturday format, which we spent a great deal of time and care crafting, we can now serve both populations,” states Program Director, Dr. David Garvey.

All classes will be held at our new UConn Hartford Campus on 10 Prospect Street, Hartford. Encore!Connecticut is intended for individuals seeking to enhance their volunteer capacity, immediate employment, or are planning for a future transition from the corporate to the nonprofit sector. For more information about applying and our redesign please see our Encore!Connecticut page. 


Intern Orientation, students sitting at desks
Intern Orientation

This year the DPP has the largest group of interns to date. Over 50 students are participating in both the Internship and Professional Practice (IPP) Program and the Sponsored Internship (SI) Program. Student interns gain managerial and/or analytic experience in a public or nonprofit agency from late August to early late May.

The IPP program is open to second year Master of Public Administration (MPA) and Master of Public Policy (MPP). SI interns consist of full time first year MPA and MPP students not awarded Graduate Assistantships. Select Fast-Track students may also be eligible to participate in the SI program. 

Interns for the 2019-2020 academic school year are working in a variety of areas including, but not limited to program development, economic development and planning, program evaluation and leadership, public policy and advocacy, strategic operations, human resource management, budget analysis, procurement and contract compliance, data analysis, finance and grants, and QI data analytics. 

Interested in hosting an intern? Please contact our Director of Public Policy Internships, David Garvey.

DPP Alumni-Student Mentoring Network

For a second consecutive semester, the DPP will be providing students with an alumni mentor. Last semester’s inaugural matching was a “… pilot that provided valuable lessons as well as some terrific mentoring successes” says Candace Fitzpatrick, a DPP alum who directs alumni relations for the department. 

Mentors provide their mentee with professional guidance during graduate school and help them prepare for a future career. 

Shortly after matching this year’s participants, Fitzpatrick was “…contacted by numerous alumni and students to tell [her] how excited and grateful they were for the opportunity to be part of the DPP Mentoring Network.”  She added, “We are fortunate that our alumni are always very generous with their time and talents, especially when they are enhancing our students’ graduate experience.” Thanks to them, every student who requested a mentor has been matched! 

Interested in becoming a mentor? Please contact Candace Fitzpatrick.

Eric Brunner – Education Policy


Eric Brunner – Education Policy

Getting Down To Facts II - Technical Report - Financing School Facilities in California: A Ten-Year Perspective
Cover of the Brunner and Vincent Technical Report

Professor and MPA and MPP Program Director Eric Brunner has recently been highlighted for his research regarding education in Connecticut and California.

Together with Jeffrey Vincent from University of California Berkeley, Brunner published a technical report on “Financing School Facilities in California: A Ten-Year Perspective” last fall. The report for Getting Down To Facts, a California research project, has been gaining recognition in California for highlighting the inequitable funding among districts. 

More recently, John Arnold of Arnold Ventures, a philanthropy that tackles pressing problems and social issues in the United States, tweeted about a working paper done by Brunner, DPP affiliated faculty Dr. Stephen Ross, and Dr. Shaun Dougherty from Vanderbilt University.  In the tweet, Arnold calls the paper the “…most interesting K-12 finding I’ve seen in a while…” He goes on to highlight the paper as “…the largest, most robust paper on causality of CTE… [that] demands attention and replication in other settings…” 

This fall, he will be teaching “Applied Policy Issues” in Hartford for graduate students. 

DPP Collaborates with CT Office of the State Comptroller


DPP Collaborates with CT Office of the State Comptroller

The Department of Public Policy (DPP) and the Connecticut Office of State Comptroller Kevin Lembo, recently collaborated on a report on behalf of the Governor’s Council on Women and Girls. The report entitled “The Connecticut State Workforce: An Analysis of Representations and Compensation Equity Across Gender and Race-Ethnicity” was completed by Dr. Mohamad Alkadry, DPP Department Head and professor, Tara Downes, Director of Communications and current MPA Fellow, and Michelle Gilman Assistant State Comptroller.

The official press release stated that the analysis was intended to identify where executive agencies stand in regard to representation and compensation. The analysis will also be used to help inform action plans to address these gaps.

The analysis found Connecticut’s executive branch agencies have reduced the gender-based pay gap, but gender-based discrepancies were found in employment in terms of over representation in concentrated social service agencies.

Findings lead to the recommendation for state evaluation of employee classification policy and agency self-assessments to determine action plans. The analysis also recommends that the Council consider a systematic schedule and procedure for the self-assessments and action plans.

News of the analysis was featured in both The New York Times and The Washington Post.

The cover for July 2019 Governor's Council on Women and Girls. "The Connecticut State Workforce: An Analysis of Representation and Compensation Equity Across Gender and Race-Ethnicity". was authored by Tara Downes, Mohamad Alkadry and Michelle Gilman.
Cover for “The Connecticut State Workforce: An Analysis of Representation and Compensation Equity Across Gender and Race-Ethnicity”

DPP to Host Annual Welcome Reception on August 22

DPP to Host Annual Welcome Reception Attendees gather at the Fall 2018 DPP Welcome Reception

Save the date! On Thursday, August 22, 2019, from 5:30 – 7:00pm, the Department of Public Policy invites all new and returning students, faculty, staff, alumni, friends, and colleagues to their annual welcome reception. Held in the Zachs Atrium of the Hartford Times Building at UConn’s Hartford Campus, this event is a wonderful opportunity to mix, mingle, and kick off the 2019-2020 academic year. We hope to see you there! Please RSVP here by August 15.

For more information about this event, please contact Catherine Guarino, DPP Administrative Program Director, at