MPP candidate Erik Hanser currently has his sights set on post-grad involvement in policy changes that will affect the lives of Michigan residents. Erik has always been interested in politics and was more specifically drawn to Public Policy after his undergraduate experience at Alma College. There he acquired degrees in both history and social studies, followed by a secondary teaching degree. After leaving Alma he worked as a substitute teacher in the Detroit and Lansing areas. In both of these locations Erik taught in a variety of districts spanning from very urban to rural settings. This variation piqued his interest for education reforms and policy.
Erik has gained exceptional experience in the field of policy with his work for the Citizens Research Council of Michigan through the Earhart Fellowship. The Citizens Research Council aims to gain information for policymakers on both state and local levels of government organizations. While serving here Erik worked on a array of different topics including: the November 2014 Wolf Hunting proposal/initiatives, state comparison fiscal policy notes, Michigan dual enrollment practices, as well as year round schools in Michigan. Currently Erik has been working on Geographic Information System programming for CRC to map out year round schools. Learn more the CRC’s work at their website here.
Erik strives to not only understand how policies are created but to also find ways to improve them, in turn bettering the lives of those affected by them. Erik would like to utilize his work experience in urban schools and passion for improving the educational system in a future career regarding educational policy. He is also interested in environmental and energy policy. Due to the variety of electives and topics covered in his MPP classes Erik is prepared to work under an assortment of topics. This variation in class material was one of his favorite aspects of the MPP program, which he feels has helped establish a knowledge base and set of skills that will allow him to work on a broad spectrum of issues. His final capstone project will explore the impact of year-round schools on student performance, attendance, and behavior. He will also review how this change affects communities and budgets, with a goal of providing information to Michigan schools considering transitioning to a new calendar. Learn more about Erik’s experience and contact him via his LinkedIn page.