Hire An MPP, Student Profiles

Hire An MPP: Hui Huang

Many of Michigan State University’s second-year Master of Public Policy students will be graduating this May. They have a wealth of experience, knowledge, and passion that will allow them to put the skills they’ve acquired to good use. We’re posting profiles of all our soon-to-be graduates so you can get to know them—and maybe find the next addition to your firm or organization!

huiName: Hui Huang

Ideal Job Location: Michigan; United States

Ideal Job: Hui Huang has flexible skills and is open to policy and data analysis work on many subjects. Her main interest, however, is in immigration and international education policy. She has had the opportunity to work on these issues at Michigan State University, which has given her a solid background in understanding how policy affects the lives of everyday people. She has also developed a strong interest in parental leave policies.

Hui’s skills in data collection, her understanding of sound research methods, and her ability to combine concern for the public with objective research and analytical skills will make her an asset to any organization.

She would most like to work in government, with an NGO, or at an institute of higher education.

Work Experience: Hui has engaged in several internships and jobs during her time in the MPP program.

She worked as a policy intern for the Michigan Coalition Against Homelessness and also served as a Research Assistant for the Chinese International Students Research Group. These experiences gave her insight into diverse state, local, and international policy issues.

Currently, Hui works as a student assistant in Michigan State University’s WorkLife Office. In this role, she researches paid parental leave policies and performs essential data collection work for members of the Association of American Universities.

“Paid parental leave policy is an important topic which will need more attention in the future,” she notes.

Skills and Academic Training: “The MPP program is a great program to help us prepare for a career,” Hui says. She has completed all three courses in Quantitative Methods, which provide training in data analysis and statistical software. She also notes that the PPL 891 special topics courses, performance management and social policies, taught her important critical thinking skills.

“Public policy will make society better and it’s meaningful for me to change something in the world,” Hui says. In her future career, she plans to make a difference by applying her skills to critical policy issues. Her commitment and abilities will allow her to perform well in a variety of policy positions and organizations.


MPP Alumni Use Their Skills in China

The Master of Public Policy Program teaches students the skills they need to succeed in the U.S. and abroad. Many of international students who have returned to their home countries have applied what they have learned to a diverse range of careers. Here we catch up with two MPP alumni currently working in China:

keranKeran Zhu

2015 graduate Keran is currently working at the China National Cereals, Oils and Foodstuffs Corporation. COFCO Group, based in Beijing, owns many different companies but is particularly focused on the food processing and manufacturing industry. On a daily basis, Keran assists in completing administrative tasks, writes reports and articles, and provides additional support for the company.

In the future, Keran would like to use the knowledge he has developed to become an entrepreneur. He says that he will continue to accumulate valuable skills and experience through this work at COFCO Group to help prepare for his own business.

Reflecting on his time in the MPP program, Keran thinks that problem-solving skills and a methodological approach to thinking have been the most valuable lessons for him.

Keran urges MPP students to take advantage of internship opportunities. A good balance between work experiences and their studies can benefit their future career as well as teach them important concepts.

For international students, he says that these experiences can help understand the United States, its government, and social practices.

xiaoyuXiaoyu Chen

2014 graduate Xiaoyu Chen currently works at Ocean University of China. She serves as a teaching assistant in the School of Literature. Xiaoyu also helps students who participate in a cooperative summer program with Ohio State University. She introduces exchange students to Chinese culture and helps them integrate into their host families. Xiaoyu has also given lectures about international relations between China and the U.S.

On top of these activities, Xiaoyu is currently helping a friend who owns a venture capital company. She uses her skills to assist with business plans, public relations, and creating data reports.

Like Keran, Xiaoyu feels that the MPP program’s training in analytical thinking was the most important part of her education. She can easily deal with concepts in international relations and understand how different interest groups may interact.

Xiaoyu plans to pursue a doctoral degree in the U.S. or Hong Kong. She would like to do research that would support better U.S.-Chinese relations and design policies to help everyone in society take part in its benefits.

She recommends that MPP students take an active approach to participating in and learning about the organizations they’re interested in.


Internships, Student Profiles

MPP in the Summer, The Places They Go: Pauline Wambua

jfgjPauline Wambua is a Michigan State University Master of Public Policy student, who has had the privilege to spend her summer interning at the Economic Policy Research Center (EPRC) in Makerere University, Uganda. EPRC is Uganda’s leading think tank in research and development policy. This center provides key policy analysis to support the formulation, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of government policies.

Pauline is working with one of the researchers to design a study to investigate optimal financing strategies within Uganda’s primary education subsector. Education in Uganda is centralized and in 1997 the government abolished all tuition fees and other charges for primary education. However, insufficient funding is one of the challenges faced by Uganda’s education sector. Her current role is to review related literature including lessons from other countries. She is also doing trend analyses of household spending on education, national budget allocation on the education sector, and how much schools receive from the government for tuition.

She was also privileged to attend two national functions in Uganda organized by EPRC: a discussion on “Macro economic implications of the 2015/16 budget”, and the 4th National Agricultural Policy Forum.