Strengthening connections between the Wisconsin Department of Health Services and the federal government is a large component of 1994 alum Donna Wong's job as a policy analyst.
On the Wednesday of finals week, La Follette School students Bo McCready, Ian Ritz, Rocio Sanchez-Moyano, Mike Schultz and Sarah Wainscott found themselves in the middle of a construction zone on Milwaukee's Cesar E. Chavez Drive. There, Milwaukee mayor Tom Barrett recognized their La Follette School workshop report and its contributions to a new city program to help businesses affected by road construction.
From suggesting ways to improve food safety to evaluating countries that receive U.S. aid, policy analysis and recommendations by La Follette School students are now on the desks of policymakers across Wisconsin and around the world.
The questions "So what? Who cares?" are not evidence of indifference or despondency for student Rocio Sanchez-Moyano. Rather they are a challenge and an impetus to understand the greater implications of her work.
For Melissa Berger, local trumps global. After completing a bachelor's degree in international political science, the La Follette student worked as a real estate agent and grounded herself in Madison and its myriad development and city management processes. "I find I enjoy making a local difference," she says.
After graduating in 1983 from what became the La Follette School of Public Affairs, Kurt Thurmaier spent three years at the Wisconsin state budget office as a budget and management analyst, then headed off to earn a Ph.D. in public administration from the Maxwell School at Syracuse University.