What are some of the best things about your job?
Like so many of us, I love advocating for the place I call home. The best thing about my job is getting to do that for a living. Government policies can make our break our communities, and it’s my job to work with elected officials to enact policies that promote economic growth and a better quality of life for all of us. That’s pretty humbling.
Why did you decide to get a degree at OU-Tulsa?
I love school. I love learning. I always knew I wanted to continue my education beyond my undergraduate degree, and OU-Tulsa gave me the opportunity to study close to home in a field that aligns with my career.
Share an experience at OU-Tulsa that has helped you with your career.
Some of what I do at the Chamber is work on municipal policies with City of Tulsa leaders. One of my classes was led by former Tulsa Mayor Rodger Randle, the man who virtually created the City’s current form of government. His insights on municipal government will forever stick with me.
What are some of your favorite moments as a Tulsa Sooner?
Most of my favorite moments revolve around my classmates. The OU-Tulsa Public Administration program is a pretty special place, and the sense of friendship and camaraderie is strong. The students support each other, spend time with each other and advocate for each other in and out of the classroom. They’re also some of the smartest classmates I’ve ever had, as they’re largely established in their careers and come with a wealth of insight in a diverse range of professions. I learned almost as much from them as from the classes themselves.
Tell us about some of your favorite classes at OU-Tulsa.
They were all my favorite. But if I had to choose, I’m a policy nerd, so I loved delving into the details of criminal justice, poverty and health care in policy-oriented classes. I would also point to Program Evaluation, where we worked in groups to analyze the effectiveness of real-world programs. That has already helped me take a critical eye to process and program improvement in my own organization.
What would you tell someone thinking about going to OU-Tulsa?
You can go to school anywhere, but it’s hard to find a place where you can learn as much from students as from the professors and class materials. If you go to OU-Tulsa (and in the MPA program, in particular!), you’ll be in classes with some of Tulsa’s finest and most talented professionals, and you’ll form relationships and connections that will help you your entire career. The value goes well beyond your degree itself.
Tell us about anything else that has made your time at OU-Tulsa meaningful.
What really made my time at OU-Tulsa special was the passion and wit of the MPA program’s Tulsa director, Dr. Meg Myers Morgan. She made every class fun, every lesson impactful and every class discussion engaging. She brought out the best in her students, including me.