People

Student Profile: Brendan McNichol, Executive MPA ‘18

December 19, 2016

Brendan S. McNichol, Executive MPA ‘18, serves as a Project Manager with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Meghan Pierce, MPA '18, sat down with Brendan to discuss his career and academic experience.

What professional work were you engaged in before you came to Fels?
Before coming to Fels, I served as an active duty U.S. Army Engineer Officer. During my time in the service, I had the opportunity to lead several units both stateside and deployed. It was an incredibly humbling and rewarding experience leading soldiers in support of our great nation.

Why did you choose Fels to pursue your MPA?
As a working professional, I was seeking an MPA program that could accommodate my schedule while providing me with an unmatched education experience. The Fels Executive MPA program just seemed to fit. The boutique program provides a unique and challenging experience that allows a real-time application of lessons learned in my current job in the public sector.

How do you seek to use your Fels degree post-graduation?
I plan to leverage the knowledge gained from my Fels degree by starting a nonprofit organization that supports veterans and their families. During the start-up process, I will also be able to utilize my Fels degree in my continued service in the Federal Government. I currently work as a Project Manager with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Marine Design Center in Philadelphia.

What is your favorite aspect of the Fels experience?
My favorite aspect of the Fels experience is the opportunity to share "best practices" and learn from my classmates during our on-campus weekends. My cohort brings an enormous wealth of knowledge to the table. Responses and conversations in class bring out real world examples and sound applications of public management.

How has Fels influenced your understanding of public service?
Attending events such as the “Public Policy in Practice” series and listening to visiting senior government officials has helped broaden my perspective of public service.  These venues expose you to different endeavors, challenges, and current affairs in public service. It makes you take a step back and look at the broader picture while being able to learn from some influential leaders who are out there today making a positive impact on our society. 

 

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Contact Information

Fels Institute of Government
University of Pennsylvania
3814 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Phone: (215) 898-2600
Fax: (215) 746-2829

felsinstitute@sas.upenn.edu