Meghan O’Connor (Fels ’16), Policy Fellow at Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC)

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As a former City Council Fellow, Meghan O’Connor (Fels ’16) has a strong grasp of the complex policy issues facing the City of Brotherly Love. But this past summer, she wanted to deepen that expertise with an experience in policy work at the federal level.

“I found out we had a Fels alum working at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, so I worked with Fels career advising to reach out and learn more about the position. The alum passed my resume along to the Policy Director,” O’Connor said.

Through the Wharton Public Policy Initiative Fellowship – an award all Penn students are eligible to apply for– O’Connor was then able to work in Washington for the summer, getting just the experience she was looking for.

O’Connor was able to work on a variety of projects, including researching and building a "recess packet" for 2016 congressional candidates. The policy information was then given to candidates to assist in holding topic-specific events around a current issue in their home districts during the August recess. 

“I was able to dive right into the work because of my research skills. Knowing how and where to look for information is especially helpful when understanding policy and the factors that go into making policy decisions, and is something not many people know how to do efficiently,” said O’Connor. 

“I took the Law & Social Policy course at the School of Social Policy and Practice in my second semester, and it gave me a new perspective on how to research and where to look for different kinds of information,” she added. 

O’Connor’s experience reflects one of the greatest strengths of the Fels program – its inter-operability with Penn’s other graduate schools. In O’Connor’s case, that was the School of Social Policy and Practice, but Fels students have the ability tailor their graduate education to fit their interests. Whether Negotiations at Wharton or Legal Responses to Inequality at Penn Law, students have a range of courses at their disposal.

Fels Institute of Government

The Fels Institute of Government
3814 Walnut St. 
Philadelphia, PA 19104

(215) 898-7326

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