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Hire an MPP: Chelsea Kazlauskas

  • _MG_0794Policy Interest(s): Welfare and Housing Policy
  • Sector Interest(s): Non-profit / Government
  • Location Preference(s): Michigan / Great Lakes Region
  • Ideal Role(s): Policy Analyst / Researcher

Chelsea Kazlauskas, a graduating Master of Public Policy, says that she originally came into the program unsure where her true policy interests lay. After taking her core classes, her interest in policy research and analysis was solidified. In choosing what her elective courses would be, Chelsea chose to take the advanced econometrics course, contributing toward her understanding of Stata. She said she enjoyed the quantitative aspects of the policy even more than she originally thought. Chelsea cites her time interning and working experience at the Michigan State Housing Development Authority as the spark that lit her passion for housing and welfare policy in general. Chelsea is an avid hiker and loves exploring state and national parks in her free time.

Chelsea can be contacted via email.

Check out some of our other graduating Masters of Public Policy!

If you have any questions about our graduating class, please contact Program Director Dr. Josh Sapotichne via email.

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Hire an MPP: Carlos Rios-Santiago

  • Carlos-Rios-Santiago-Photo-2-175x250Policy Interest(s): Economic Development / Social Security / Fiscal Policy
  • Sector Interest(s): Federal Government / Private / Non-profit
  • Location Preference(s): Washington D.C. / Michigan
  • Ideal Role(s): Policy Analyst

Carlos Rios-Santiago, a graduating Master of Public Policy, is an adept policy analyst, seeking to build a career managing and analyzing data. Carlos took advantage of every methods and econometrics course that the program offered, allowing him to significantly improve his applied analytical skills. Specifically, having taken both Quantitative Methods III and Advanced Econometrics, he has gained a strong understanding of both the applied and theoretical aspects of policy analysis.

While working at the Economic Development Administration, Carlos regularly wrote, revised, and reviewed R scripts, performed outlier analysis with R/Excel, and used Stata to evaluate the impact construction projects have on local and county economies.  He continued to refine his analysis on construction projects and it became his capstone. His data focused internship with the EDA was complemented by his government affairs internship at Boston Scientific (BSC). At BSC, he had the opportunity to interact with legislators and lobbyists, strengthening his interpersonal skills, and giving him a strong understanding of multiple stakeholders’ perspectives.

Carlos can be reached on his LinkedIn.

Check out some of our other graduating Masters of Public Policy!

If you have any questions about our graduating class, please contact Program Director Dr. Josh Sapotichne via email.

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Hire an MPP: Ian Magnuson


  • Policy Interest(s): Local Environmental Policy / International Education
  • Sector Interest(s): Non-profit / Private / Local Government / State Government
  • Location Preference(s): West Michigan / Pacific Northwest, US/Canada
  • Ideal Role(s): Policy Entrepreneur / Practitioner

Ian Magnuson, a graduating Master of Public Policy, is an experienced innovator and entrepreneur, deeply interested in the process by which policies are developed and implemented. His drive to leave an organization better than he found it started during his undergraduate studies at Western Michigan University. Since 2009, Ian has co-founded three student organizations, proposed and executed an internship coordinating all international activities on campus, and later, founded a website dedicated to empowering young Americans to explore the world from their hometown.

Ian is also an experienced international educator, having completed a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Leipzig, Germany. While living abroad, Ian’s passion for environmental action began, as he saw a huge disparity in the amount of clean energy adopted in Germany relative to climatically-similar Michigan. Owing to the ability to tailor his classes towards a policy focus, this experience, coupled with courses on policy evaluation, administration, and an elective course on climate change, Ian began to explore a city’s options in adapting to and mitigating the impacts of global climate change. This led to his current capstone project developing an easy-to-understand framework for city sustainability and climate action planning and investigating the methods by which these policies diffuse more broadly.

A consistent through-line in Ian’s professional and academic experience is his focus on interdisciplinary solutions, being often most interested in how seemingly unrelated ideas relate. Before settling on climate action and sustainability planning, Ian made sure to explore a wide array of policy fields. As a graduate assistant, he had the opportunity to serve as a research assistant looking into local educational politics. Later, during his InnovateGov internship with the Michigan Office for New Americans, Ian interviewed multiple stakeholders and synthesized data from a variety of governmental bodies to create a foundational report on the intersection between federal immigration policy changes and state agricultural production.

While Ian’s policy research is geared mostly to local action, he still has an eye to issues of global relevance. This is, in part, what led him to the Global Urban Studies Program specialization, which had him look at climate action planning in Denmark, the United Kingdom, and most recently, Canada. Ian wishes to advocate for ways cities can think more globally and consider their environmental impact in a global, rather than national (or smaller) context.

Overall, Ian is flexible about his career goals, but ideally he would like to work as both a policy developer and communicator. He would like to harness his experience and passion for education , innovation, and policy entrepreneurship in a way that helps cities address global climate change and help transition Michigan to a carbon-free energy infrastructure. Ending on a lighter note, Ian is a longtime competitive swimmer and is learning to like running. He’s is also interested in travelling, photography, drawing, and readily admits he knows too much about Star Wars!

Ian can be reached via email or his LinkedIn.

Check out some of our other graduating Masters of Public Policy!

If you have any questions about our graduating class, please contact Program Director Dr. Josh Sapotichne via email.

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Hire an MPP: Xiao Xing

WechatIMG16 - Xiao Xing

  • Policy Interest(s): Local Government Finance / Education / Policy Evaluation
  • Sector Interest(s): Non-profit / Private Sector Policy Research
  • Location Preference(s): Lansing, MI / Washington D.C. / or other Policy Hubs
  • Ideal Role(s): Policy Analyst / Consultant / Researcher

Xiao Xing, a graduating Master of Public Policy, is seeking to take advantage of her policy analysis and econometrics experience by working as a policy analyst, ideally as a member of a policy think tank. Xiao opted to take every econometrics course offered through the program, contributing to a thorough understanding of Stata. Additionally, she tailored her electives toward state and local finance courses, which has led her to her capstone project that is exploring the impacts of the state-mandated Deficit Elimination Plan required of cities in fiscal distress.

Xiao also participated in two internships while a completing her program. Her first was with the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department, which showed her how the government works and implements policy and regulations. She says that the role shaped her thinking, allowing her to more easily think academically and logically on the job. Her second internship was as a research assistant in Center for Local Government Finance and Policy. Xiao says she is seeking a position as a researcher because she “found I really enjoy looking for evidence and collect data, making incremental progress toward a larger goal”. Xiao is a big fan of stationary and hanging out with her cat, Yoyo.

Xiao can be reached via email or on her LinkedIn.

Check out some of our other graduating Masters of Public Policy!

If you have any questions about our graduating class, please contact Program Director Dr. Josh Sapotichne via email.

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Hire an MPP: Warren Rothe


  • Policy Interest(s): All Things Local Government / Public Finance / Budgeting
  • Sector Interest(s): Local Government
  • Location Preference(s): Metro Detroit, MI / Michigan
  • Ideal Role(s): City Manager

Warren Rothe is a graduating Master of Public Policy seeking to use his extensive fiscal and budgetary background experience to become a city manager in Michigan. He wants to help a community craft their budget and accomplish their goals. Warren would like to remain in his home state of Michigan and is open to moving around the state but would one day like to return to the Metro Detroit area where he is from. Warren is also open to using his education and experience to work in the broader public sector because the bottom line is that he is interested in playing a role in shaping public policies that affect the residents of Michigan. One of his key strengths is his ability to narrow in on technically complex policy issues while retaining the “big-picture” understanding of how a policy is meant to work.  Additionally, Warren enjoys interacting with members of the public, policy professionals, and government officials and believes that his desire to be a team leader will serve him well as an administrator.

Warren’s experience as an MPP student at Michigan State University gave him a thorough understanding of the policy process and research methodology. He was able to use his policy interests and education to conduct research on Michigan’s financially distressed local governments and the policies and practices that enable the state’s municipalities to thrive. Warren was able to tailor his course of study to meet his interests as well. He took courses in state and local government finance, which gave him a detailed understanding of contemporary issues these governments are working through. Additionally, a course in grantwriting gave him experience with the grant making process, which led him to write a grant proposal for a community education program. Finally, Warren was able to take an advanced methodological course in public policy research to further develop his ability to analyze data-heavy policy issues. For his capstone project, Warren is examining policy actions and management strategies taken by local governments to navigate Michigan’s challenging municipal finance environment. He is particularly interested in studying how cities have grappled with increasing pension and retiree health care costs in the face of constitutional restrictions on their ability to grow revenue and recover lost property tax revenues from the Great Recession.

The resources and training of the program gave Warren the ability to work in his policy areas of interest. At the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a think-tank in Washington DC, he worked with the State Fiscal Project research team and conducted research on state tax policy and analyzed state budget data. This experience allowed him to hone his research skills outside of the classroom. Warren currently works at the Michigan Department of Treasury in the Community Engagement and Finance Division. In this position, Warren gained critical training and experience working with the development of local government budgets and financial reporting. Additionally, Warren has significant experience in researching and implementing newly-enacted legislation to help local governments deal with the expensive and growing costs of pension and retiree health care liabilities that are consuming more and more of local government’s limited resources. When he is not engrossed in public policy matters, Warren is typically found playing piano, planning an upcoming trip, and enjoying a good burger.

Warren can be reached via email or on his LinkedIn.

Check out some of our other graduating Masters of Public Policy!

If you have any questions about our graduating class, please contact Program Director Dr. Josh Sapotichne via email.

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Hire an MPP: Kyle Goldstein


  • Policy Interest(s): Regulatory, Health, and Energy Policy
  • Sector Interest(s): Private
  • Location Preference(s): Michigan
  • Ideal Role(s): Researcher / Analyst

Kyle Goldstein is a graduating Master of Public Policy with a strong background in regulatory affairs, having interned with ITC Holdings, an electrical transmission owner in Michigan and the Midwest overall. Kyle also gained valuable experience working for both Senator Tony Schuitmaker and, later, the City of Detroit through our InnovateGov program. Kyle, who is interested in working as an analyst or researcher at a private firm, says that the MPP program helped him discover the quantitative side of public policy, as well as an overall interest in it. It increased his desire to use these skills in his career.

Citing the flexibility of the program beyond the core classes, Kyle said his grantwriting and regulatory and government affairs classes were particularly useful to his career goals. Overall, his experience taught him where his career interests lie and helped him realize that he wanted to do something in regulatory affairs after graduating. Kyle’s capstone project will be investigating the 2014 Medicaid expansion and whether or not it helped address the coverage gap for children in states that chose to adopt it. Kyle has always been a passionate Detroit sports fan, which only grew after his first Tiger’s game, where one of the players tossed him a game ball as he was walking in!

Feel free to reach out to Kyle by email or on his LinkedIn.

Check out some of our other graduating Masters of Public Policy!

If you have any questions about our graduating class, please contact Program Director Dr. Josh Sapotichne via email.

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Hire an MPP: Luke Allen

IMG_1264 - Luke Allen

  • Policy Interest(s): Rural Development / Healthcare
  • Sector Interest(s): No Preference with Significant Non-Profit Experience
  • Location Preference(s): Near Washtenaw County, MI / Northern Michigan
  • Ideal Role(s): Combination of Outreach, Organizing, and Policy Analysis

Luke Allen, a graduating Master of Public Policy, says that his “MPP experience has taught me a great deal about the importance of quality program and policy evaluation. I’ve also been lucky, through my fellowship, to work with a very wide array of stakeholders, from academics to practitioners to elected officials, which has taught me that there really is value in cross pollination and collaboration, and that we need more of it.” Crediting his elective courses on state and municipal government, Luke says that he’s “become more optimistic about the ability of states and municipalities to implement ambitious and creative policies to improve society”. His capstone, tentatively titled ‘Lost in the Woods: Addressing the Rural Health Crisis’, proposes a menu of policy solutions to fix rural health disparities.

Prior to coming to MSU, Luke spent five years working as a community organizer and another year directing an environmental advocacy non-profit. Reflecting his passion for this type of work, he says that he’s “seen the effect that can be had when ordinary people participate in democracy in a deep way, in addition to the power that policy experts and public officials have to make immediate, meaningful change”. Luke’s impetus for beginning his MPP was a continuation of his drive to challenge assumptions, including his own, saying that he sought to “learn to evaluate what is effective policy, not just based on my values, but from a practical perspective”.  Luke is a well-rounded, experienced, and most importantly, passionate teammate and leader and is looking to make a difference. Luke lives in Ypsilanti, with his wife Alex, a pastor serving a congregation in Ann Arbor, and their chocolate lab, Doxology

Luke can be reached via his LinkedIn.

Check out some of our other graduating Masters of Public Policy!

If you have any questions about our graduating class, please contact Program Director Dr. Josh Sapotichne via email.