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Getting to Know New Policy Council Members: Jose Scott


Jose Scott is a first year PhD student at the University of Southern California. He is also a new member of the Policy Council as the student representative. Let's find out some more about Jose in this brief interview. 

Tell us a little bit about yourself

My name is Jose Scott. I am a first year PhD student at the Sol Price School of Public Policy, University of Southern California. My research interests are broadly centered around social and economic inequality; I am more specifically interested in understanding the ways in which poverty is institutionalized through public policies in the United States. I also completed my MPA at the Price School in May of 2020. I did my undergraduate degree in my home state of Washington, at Washington State University, where I majored in Public Affairs with a concentration on public policy and politics. In my free time I like to read, listen to music, and play games with my nieces and nephews.

How did you first learn about APPAM?

I first learned about APPAM as an MPA student. I had heard nothing but great things from my professors and peers who had attended conferences, so I decided to become a member myself. I am entering into my third year as an APPAM student member, and I am excited to see what the future holds! 

What made you want to join the Executive Council?

I was really excited to hear about the opportunity to run for the Executive Council. As a first year PhD student, I was looking for ways to get connected with the larger public policy and analysis community, and to me this seemed like a great avenue to do so! I am honored to have been chosen for the role, and I cannot wait to get started to hopefully begin making a positive difference in the community.

What do you think is the most important thing that you can do as a student leader?

As cliché as it might sound, I think the most important thing a student leader can do is listen. Having served in various leadership roles throughout my career as a student, I have found that oftentimes people just want to feel heard, to feel that someone cares enough to listen. I think that this is especially important now given the current state of the world. As the student representative, I look forward to listening to my peers’ thoughts and ideas and bringing them back to the Executive Council.

What is your favorite thing about being a graduate student?

I love that as a graduate student I have the opportunity to pursue the research topics that interest me. I have always been a naturally inquisitive person, and graduate school has provided the perfect outlet for me to think critically about the world around me, while growing as a lifelong learner. I also love that I am surrounded by colleagues who are just as passionate about what they do; the fact that I get to socialize and connect with others with similar interests makes an at times isolating journey that much more enjoyable.

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