Samuel Landowski, MPA

Profile photo of Samuel LandowskiHometown

Fort Atkinson, WI

Undergraduate education

Bachelor’s degree in political science, certificate in development economics, UW–Madison

Professional or research interests

Anti-poverty policy, housing, and education

Expected graduation date

May 2023

Why a Master of Public Affairs (MPA)?

Working in public service has always felt like a natural home for me. During my undergrad, I became interested in issues of economic and social justice. I’d worked at a local non-profit law firm dedicated to representing underserved communities. This was informative at a personal level, giving the issues I’d studied in my undergraduate program context within my own community. I decided to pursue a MPA to better understand how government systems can more effectively respond to social crises and alleviate cycles of inequality.

Why the La Follette School?

First, I love Madison – I’ve lived here for six years and was excited to spend more time at UW. Second, our faculty are experts in their field and really care about educating and mentoring students. I knew this would be a first-class education.

Career goals

I see myself working within state or federal government, focusing on some issue of economic inequality. Right now, I’m interested in housing and family policies, but that’s always subject to change!

Advice for prospective La Follette School students

Get out of your comfort zone! You’ll be surprised by what you’re capable of.

Most challenging La Follette School experience?

I’d never had any experience with statistics and coding before La Follette and felt very out-of-depth in the first weeks of the semester. Luckily, through many trips to office hours and group study sessions, I was able to get a better understanding of the content (and do well in the class).

Most rewarding La Follette School experience?

I’ve met so many wonderful people through the program. I am continuously inspired by my peers’ expertise and passion and am happy to call many of them close friends. The La Follette faculty and staff have given so much support as well, always happy to connect and help you grow.

The Wisconsin Idea

The Wisconsin Idea was ever-present during my time at UW as an undergrad. Wisconsin is my home and I love the emphasis that La Follette places on using our degree to benefit our communities.

Before the La Follette School

I worked as a grants specialist in the Wisconsin Department of Justice’s Office of School Safety. We administered a $100 million grant for all public, private, charter, and tribal schools across the state. I was proud to have worked within a program that will be felt by so many different communities.

People would be surprised to know…

I make a great chili (the secret: garbanzo beans).

Is there anything you’d like to add or emphasize?

In my free time, I love biking around the city, street photography, and trying all the great restaurants Madison has to offer.