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Student Profile: Erica McAdam
Public Policy master's student in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
My name is Erica McAdam and I was born and raised on the traditional, unceded, and stolen lands of the Anishinaabe Algonquin Nation, for which I am extremely grateful. I hold a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Law from Carleton University and am a new graduate of the SFU Master of Public Policy program. My research interests lie within substance use, health, and Indigenous policy.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO COME TO SFU?
I choose the Master of Public Policy program for a number of reasons including, that it offered the opportunity to complete a capstone thesis and for the co-op component. SFU is located in one of the most beautiful places in the world and made choosing to move to the West coast an easy decision for me.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR RESEARCH OR YOUR PROGRAM TO A FAMILY MEMBER?
My capstone thesis research is focused on evaluating different models of drug decriminalization for the Province of British Columbia. Drug prohibition and the criminalization of people who use drugs creates a plethora of avoidable harms both to the individual and society. Drug decriminalization is an innovative approach utilized in other jurisdictions around the world to mitigate the completely unnecessary and harmful effects of criminalization. My research conducts an evidence-based multi-criterion policy analysis of six different models of decriminalization, which differ on how personal possession is defined, to identify the model that would work best for the Province.
WHAT ARE YOU PARTICULARLY ENJOYING ABOUT YOUR STUDIES/RESEARCH AT SFU?
I have really enjoyed the opportunity to have in-person classes during my last year at SFU. Starting a Master’s program during a worldwide pandemic has been a really challenging experience and after a year of online classes and co-op, I am grateful that I have had the opportunity to attend classes in person.
HAVE YOU BEEN THE RECIPIENT OF ANY MAJOR OR DONOR-FUNDED AWARDS? IF SO, PLEASE TELL US WHICH ONES AND A LITTLE ABOUT HOW THE AWARDS HAVE IMPACTED YOUR STUDIES AND/OR RESEARCH.
I am a recipient of the Maloney Petter Fellowship in Public Policy. This award has provided me with the necessary financial support that has allowed me to focus primarily on my studies and has allowed me to take away as much as possible from this program. I am endlessly grateful.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PROGRAM/POSTDOC POSITION TO SOMEONE STILL SEARCHING FOR A PROGRAM OR POSTDOC POSITION?
The Master of Public Policy program is great for people who have big aspirations to change our country and world. If you are no longer okay with the status quo and want to help make meaningful change, I believe the Master of Public Policy program provides students with the tools to help enable them to be successful in their careers as future policymakers.
IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE YOU'D LIKE TO SHARE?
I am so grateful for my experience at SFU in the Master of Public Policy program. My professors and fellow students have made this one of the most important and life-changing experiences, and I am endlessly grateful for their support and guidance.
Contact : firstname.lastname@example.org