Student news – spring 2023

Certificate student Isa Butz gestures towards a poster while Chancellor Mnookin listens
UW–Madison Chancellor Jennifer Mnookin (center) listens as UW–Madison students Sarah Almutawa (left) and Isa Butz (right) talk about their research project, titled “Impacts of Imposter Phenomenon and Sense of Belonging in Underrepresented Honors Students.”

Isa Butz (certificate in health policy student) shared the results of her research project at the March Research in the Rotunda event, an outreach event at the Wisconsin State Capitol that provides students and faculty advisors from across the UW System the opportunity to share their research findings with Wisconsin legislators, state leaders, and members of the public. She completed her project, titled “Impacts of Imposter Phenomenon and Sense of Belonging in Underrepresented Honors Students,” with fellow student Sarah Almutawa. Butz plans to graduate this spring with bachelor’s degrees in psychology and neurobiology and certificates in health policy, health and the humanities, LGBTQ+ studies, and biology core curriculum, with honors in the liberal arts. She will attend medical school this fall at Medical College of Wisconsin and plans to earn a master’s degree in public health.

McKenna Goetz (MPH-MPA student) started a new health policy analyst internship at the Office of Strategic Health Policy at Wisconsin Department of Employee Trust Funds. In this role, she will help to develop intervention recommendations to address health policy topics that impact populations covered by the Group Insurance Board.

Ariana Hammersmith (MPA student) was named a finalist for the Presidential Management Fellows program, the federal government’s flagship leadership development program. Of the more than 10,000 individuals from around the world who applied for the program, only 850 finalists were chosen. As part of the program, Hammersmith will be appointed a two-year, full-time federal position to apply her skills while engaging in leadership development training.

John O’Malley (MIPA student) started a new position in February as Middle East studies intern at the American Enterprise Institute, a public policy think tank based in Washington, D.C. Previously, O’Malley has completed internships at the Wisconsin State Capitol, UW’s UniverCity Alliance, and the Center for New American Security.

Awa Maïga (MIPA student) was featured in a story by the UW–Madison African Studies Program. Maïga is the former executive director at Leading Change Africa, the current president of Leading Change Mali, and the founder of KITAB, an association that empowers youth and women in Africa by providing access to higher education and professional development. She is interested in education policy, leadership, public service, gender studies, and international development, and her current research is aimed at understanding the role of African women in politics focusing on women in Mali, and West Africa as a whole.

Gabriel Stowe Terrell (MPA and MS in urban & regional planning student) accepted an offer from the Office of the Administrator within the Federal Transit Administration, a division of the U.S. Department of Transportation, to work as an intern this summer. He is completing the internship through the Summer Transportation Internship Program for Diverse Groups (STIPDG), a partnership between USDOT and The Washington Center. STIPDG is a paid internship program that aims to mentor and cultivate tomorrow’s transportation leaders. Terrell currently works as a business and community development intern at the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), where his primary responsibility is to manage the WEDC Historic Tax Credit program. In addition to pursuing an MPA, he is completing a master of science in urban and regional planning at UW–Madison.

Haoyan (Ken) Wang (certificate in public policy and MIPA student) had a paper accepted at the 2023 Crossroads Conference, a conference for graduate students hosted by the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at UW–Madison. He presented the paper, titled “Foreign Policy Crisis Coverage in U.S. Media,” at the March 3 conference. Wang is pursuing bachelor’s degrees in political science, international studies, and journalism, with certificates in German, public policy, and European studies. He is also an accelerated student in the Master of International Public Affairs Program. His current research focuses on the relationship between the media and levels of corruption in authoritarian regimes. Wang works as an editorial intern at Ballotpedia, deputy editor in chief at The Wisconsin International Review, and as a communications and multimedia intern at the UW–Madison Language Institute.

Mitchell Wenzel (MPA student) will start a fiscal analyst position with the Arizona Joint Legislative Budget Committee in June after graduating with his MPA. Since May 2021, Wenzel has worked as a budget analyst intern for Waukesha County, where he works hands on with the budget staff in the preparation, implementation, and monitoring of the county’s annual adopted budget.

Students, have an update to share? Please share it via this brief questionnaire.

Subscribe to our newsletter