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Personal Statement for Wagner School

My passion for working in public service surfaced whilst at medical school, when I realized that helping individuals through the capacity of a medical practitioner would only skim the surface of my desire to make a difference. Having witnessed at first hand, as an immigrant to this country, the enormous divides between rich and poor and the difficulties that so many of our citizens face in getting their basic healthcare needs met, I believe that it is only through creating meaningful laws and statues that my fellow Americans from whatever ethnic background or social status may feel secure in their own country.

I am interested in applying to the Wagner School’s MPA in Health Policy and Management program because of its reputation for providing an excellent grounding in the social, political, cultural and financial implications of health policy, and the subsequent opportunities that this understanding brings. To prepare for my application, I have gained extensive experience through internships at the New York State Assembly and US Congress, where I worked in direct contact with interest groups, constituents and lobbying firms.

I was also responsible for conducting legislative meetings, drafting legislation and preparing speeches for the Congressman. My tri-lingual abilities of Russian, Ukrainian and English were utilized through providing translations of weekly newsletters. These internships have provided me with a firmer understanding of how laws take shape from conception to implementation: from whose interests are actually being safeguarded and by whom, to how legislators take action in order to promote their ideas and lobby for peer support in order to pass the laws that govern our democracy.

I had many unforgettable experiences during these internships, and in particular, I was struck by the gaps in public policy in relation to women. I was exposed to the realities of how many underprivileged women are denied justice, employment, and other necessities. These women involved in these public issues are mostly women of color with babies.

Working in close proximity, I was able to observe that many of them habitually stared blankly into space, whilst others voiced in conversations how they are accustomed to being refused the necessary support to enable them and their children to live healthier lives, and spoke with the look of defeat and frustration in their eyes. These encounters corroborated the experiences that I had from working within a health insurance company, where I witnessed that it was often those most in need of assistance that were routinely declined and denied it.

From this, I became aware of the possible ways of extending help to them, as my consciousness of the world and surroundings grew. I started to do more reading and research on the conditions of women. I became aware of the widening issues about women in society. I am committed to ensuring that I play some part in securing a better, healthier future for these women, and believe that my path towards that is in the continuation of my studies in the areas of health policy and management.

Successful public and social policies rely on the fundamental understanding of how each aspect of policy can impact on another. Through this maze, it is important that the strategic intent of each individual policy is captured and adhered to, without being detrimental to another policy that is being implemented. The aim of public policy management is to ensure that the essence of their goals is sustained and achievable in the long term. On an individual level, this requires the ability to hold an overview of strategic intent, whilst also pay attention to the minutiae of implementation.

It requires patience, integrity and the ability to focus on the long term implications of practice. I believe that I have demonstrated these qualities throughout my career to date, and that my experiences provide me with the intellectual capabilities and the emotional veracity to weather the realities of a career in public affairs. It is my desire to contribute in whatever way I can to the betterment of the lives of my fellow citizens, and I look forward to the continuous learning that a career in this field offers me.

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