Alumni Ambassadors

Crystal Williams

Crystal Williams, MPA/MSW 2019

Case Manager and Outreach Coordinator, Dean of Students, CARE Team Binghamton University

“My most rewarding experience was working with Party with A Purpose for the Philanthropy Incubator project. My advice for current students would be to introduce yourself to the MPA department and CCPA Dean's Office. Make sure to stay connected with everyone you meet along the way, including faculty and community organizations."

Laila Hernandez, MPA 2018

Laila Hernandez, MPA 2018

Immigration Legal Assistant, Journey's End Refugee Services

"The Master of Public Administration (MPA) program did an excellent job of instilling the real sense of public service. The most rewarding experience was being given the opportunity to commemorate my diversity and talk about very uncomfortable topics such as race and the social injustices that people of color experience on a day to day basis. Don't underestimate what you can be to someone and the positive impact you can have by just caring and exuding passion for helping others."

Jaclyn Schulze

Jaclyn Schulze, MPA 2018

Senior Procurement Analyst, NYC Mayor's Office of Contract Services

“In my first semester of the MPA program, I had the opportunity to submit feedback on the International Panel for Social Progress draft report, which was created to provide a vision and guidance for achieving social progress in the 21st century. It was hard work and incredibly rewarding to contribute feedback alongside important stakeholders across the world. Personal and professional growth occurs when we step outside our comfort zone and challenge ourselves. Do not be afraid to try new things.”

Jessica Nejeschleba

Jessica Nejeschleba, MPA 2017

Executive Director, Broome County Land Bank Corporation

"The MPA program focused on professional development by collaborating with others on group projects. Each project prepared me to manage many different community-wide project partners such as contractors, co-developers, and governmental entities to achieve the mission of the Broome County Land Bank. My advice to current students is to get involved in extracurricular activities outside of the MPA program. Participating in local events, volunteering for different causes are great resume builders and experiences to touch on during employment interviews."

Aylone Katzin

Aylone Katzin, MPA 2017

Assistant to the Village Manager, Village of Scarsdale

"The most valuable preparation I received from the MPA program would be the ability to view things comprehensively. As an administrator, it is highly important to understand that all individuals work in a network of people and organizations interdependently and that no individual truly works in a silo. My most rewarding experience was interning for a village manager in a small-town local government and seeing concepts, projects and discussions from my MPA courses used by real practitioners in real operations. Take advantage of every course, program, volunteer position, or project that you come across."

Kalia Pfister

Kaila Pfister, MPA 2015

Interpretive Park Ranger, National Park Service

“It [the MPA] prepared me for future steps in my career, as park management requires a lot of conversations and compromises with local community officials, budgeting and general operation of a wide-scale agency with strategic goals for the future in an ever-changing political climate. Running the Philanthropy Incubator was a huge part of my growing experience, because I got to interact with a bunch of different stakeholders and hone my presentation skills. I didn't know what I wanted to do post-undergraduate and this degree is fluid enough that it can be utilized in different sectors and refined later in life."

Jessica Stanis

Jessica Stanis, MPA/MSW 2015

Director, Binghamton Rescue Mission

"My parents are immigrants who came over from Trinidad and they faced a lot of adversity and challenges, many of which I witnessed growing up. Luckily, they had many friends here and a support system that helped them succeed. As an adult, I knew I wanted to return the favor and be a support system for those who might not have one. My advice for students entering the field is not to let fear control you. I'm working in my dream job, at a really established company for a great cause, but it's easy to talk yourself out of your dreams and think of everything that can go wrong. You can’t let those negative thoughts talk you out of something you want.” 

Christopher Wells

Christopher Wells, MPA 2013

Vice President, Public Affairs at Personalized Medicine Coalition

“The MPA program gave me the ability to consider new ways of doing things that would achieve an organization's larger goals, instead of simply following procedures without considering their purpose. It forced me to think critically about a variety of complex organizational challenges, so that I had some practice in doing so before I was faced with them in practice. Your character is your most important work product. Strive to be a humble and dependable person who is willing to admit to and learn from your mistakes. With this attitude, you will overcome anything lacking in your current skill set over time."

Nico Myering

Nico Meyering, MPA 2013

Business Administrator, University of Pennsylvania's Orphan Disease Center

"The most important thing the Binghamton MPA program taught me was how to effectively work in dynamic groups. Nonprofit agencies have a high turnover rate, but a good public servant can adapt to these changes and collaborate with new and old team members to deliver excellent programs and services to their clients. Excellent communication and collaboration skills will always be valuable tools. After graduating with my MPA, I did two years of AmeriCorps national service and won the Presidential Volunteer Service Award twice. I embraced my identity as a disabled man and now serve on the board of the CCHS Family Network, the nonprofit organization supporting people and families living with CCHS."

Dr. Li (Emily) Cheng, MPA 2013

Dr. Li (Emily) Cheng, MPA 2013

Data Researcher, Institute for Educational Leadership

"I really appreciate all the research and practice opportunities the MPA program provided me. Through these opportunities, I was able to apply the knowledge and skills I learned from the courses to real-life studies and practices. All of these experiences also enlightened the direction of my personal and professional development path. MPA also has great professors and instructors, who have been mentors and sincere friends to me not only during the program but also throughout my professional life."

Noreen Chambers Ahern

Noreen Chambers Ahern, MPA 2010

Executive Director of Early Childhood Finance, New York City Department of Education

"Binghamton's MPA program is focused on local policy issues and local impact. Through academic and field work, I was prepared to dive into solving real issues in New York City government. The program teaches students to take time to understand policy and organizational issues, while also focusing on teaching students to implement. The most valuable experience was working collaboratively to solve problems. Make the most of your access to professors, cohort, and alumni. Take this time to really try to improve your practice. Remember, feedback is a gift."

Jasmin Queen Singleton, MPA 2008

Senior Director of Program Operations, Boys Town South Florida

"The MPA program, specifically the courses on nonprofit management, provided a lot of perspective and baseline experience for my career in the nonprofit sector. I had great professors who really challenged me and pushed me to put my best foot forward. My relationships with my peers were also very rewarding! Take in all you can and enjoy. Also, ask your professors questions. They have experience working in the fields you are going into and can provide great insight."

Nathaniel Wright

Nathaniel Wright, MPA 2006

Assistant Professor, Texas Tech University

"I think that my MPA degree helped me to understand the inner workings of nonprofit organizations and local government. It also provided me the confidence to excel in a career in both the nonprofit and public sectors. One piece of advice that I would offer current MPA students is that it's okay to make mistakes! Mistakes help you learn more about yourself and how to grow as an individual. The MPA from Binghamton University will take you places that you never dreamed of!"