Graduate student Michael Coleman is pursuing his MPA through the O’Neill School at IUPUI, focusing his degree on policy analysis. Michael was named among IUPUI’s Elite 50 grad students. He says he knew grad school was the moment to make the move to O’Neill.
“I always felt as though my undergrad degree should have been in O’Neill, but it was too late to change when I got so far into my bachelor’s degree,” he says. “The MPA program just feels like my calling, because I believe in servant leadership and the public sector is the best realm to impact.”
He is well on his way toward putting his degree to work for the community. We asked him about the award and his most memorable experience in O’Neill’s MPA program.
What was your reaction to being selected for an Elite 50 award?
“I was surprised. I honestly thought they forgot about my submission because a good amount of time had passed since my submission.”
What advice would you have for students who are considering a graduate degree from O’Neill?
“Students should have a passion for the degree and concentration they choose. There are great professors at O’Neill and there are great connections to be made.”
What has been one of your most memorable experiences with O’Neill as a grad student?
“My Governing in a Global Society class with Dr. Cullen Merritt has been the most memorable experience. I remember being in the first or second week of class and feeling a wave of emotional excitement from the way he conducted the class. It made me understand how fun and engaging graduate school could be when compared to what undergraduate school was for me.”
What are your plans after earning your degree?
“I plan to apply to law school after I earn my degree and continue to work in the public sector. I am currently a director with the Boys & Girls Club and a petty officer second class in the United States Navy Reserves.”