Before starting the MPP program in 2010, Francisco studied a Bachelor of Arts in Politics and Communication. Although he'd always been fascinated by politics, during his bachelor degree he felt more interested on the impact that politics has in the daily life of people. For that reason, he started looking for a master degree that would allow him to learn about how policy is made and implemented outside of the books and theory. The MPP program at SFU had all the elements Francisco was looking for in a MA, in particular, the Co-op component. He decided to enroll and, as of now, it has been one of the best decision he made in terms of academic and professional career.
The program allowed the chance to hone skills in research, analysis and implementation of public policy. Although it seemed challenging at the beginning, the faculty members at the School helped us understand our role as future policy makers. One of the best things the program offers is the flexibility to adapt the knowledge you receive to your area of interest. In Francisco's case, he always wanted to work in the areas of education and international development. For that reason, and with the support of the School, he secured an international Co-op term and took courses outside of the MPP courses. These experiences were key in solidifying his academic passion and helped build his career.
Francisco has been able to put into practice what he learned almost every day at work. As a program manager in the natural resources sector, he is responsible to develop and implement projects, in collaboration with government officials and employees, faculty members, researchers, consultants and students. The MPP program prepared him with both the practical and critical skills that are needed in a complex sector where you need to understand the sometimes conflicting needs and requirements of multiple stakeholders.