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What you can learn from these three successful Crawford School of Public Policy graduates

James Davis

Careers Commentator
ANU’s Crawford School is renowned not only for its quality education, but the graduates that have benefitted. You can enjoy similar success.

The Crawford School of Public Policy plays host to some of the highest quality professors and researchers in the country. Their academic staff serve on government committees and aid in policy decisions made by the government. Students and alumni are no-less accomplished, boasting numerous success stories that ought to inspire any prospective student of public policy. Here are just a few of their exemplary graduates, accompanied by what can be learned from their successes.

1: Thomas Kaydor - Master of Public Policy (Honours) graduate

Thomas Kaydor graduated in 2014 with a major in development policy, but his humanitarian interests stretch before then. As early as 1999, he was volunteering at Habitat for Humanity International, revealing an early desire to help others. After many years spent teaching others, he joined the United Nations as a Coordination Analyst in 2010. In this role, he liaised with stakeholders in dialogues affairs concerning Liberia to ensure they all got a say in UN programmes. It gave him the experience to assist in Ethiopia, where he served as a Coordination and Common Services Adviser.

With an exceptional qualification in hand, he is now the Assistant Minister for Africa, Asia and the Pacific within the government of Liberia. His education allows him to be an effective diplomat who can provide sound strategic advice. His critical analyses of contemporary issues concerning Liberia and its international relations have made real strides toward bettering the country, which he continues today.

If you’re a prospective student considering this qualification, a very important lesson can be learned from Thomas Kaydor: your career doesn’t need to be on hold until you graduate. He demonstrated initiative even before completing his bachelor’s degree, volunteering at a worthy organisation and helping people where he could.

As a policy aspirant, ask yourself why you’re interested in it. You’ve likely struck upon a particular, powerful motive. What is that motive? The desire to see positive change in communities. After all, public policy has the power to make this happen with the right people in charge. Why not be like Kaydor and start early with small acts of volunteering to give yourself a better understanding of your community and the policies it needs?

2: Sarah Aslam - Master of Public Policy graduate

One thing that makes the success of Sarah Aslam even more impressive is the fact she was raising children while simultaneously studying outside her home country, Pakistan. Her experiences with students from all over the world, combined with the efforts of teaching staff at Crawford, made the journey an overall positive one.

The lessons that can be learned from Aslam’s success are quite different to those of Kaydor despite their similar motivations. From Aslam, prospective students can learn that it’s possible to overcome personal fears and tribulations in favour of achieving one’s goals. For many, the notion of studying in an entirely different country is highly daunting, let alone raising children and moving a family while doing so. We know from Aslam that exemplary time management can be utilised to acquire a high level degree, despite astounding odds. At Crawford School, the experience is made all the easier.

3: Jesse Doyle - Master of International and Development Economics graduate

Jesse Doyle represents the traditional sort of success many university students would aspire for. He doesn’t share the volunteering experience of Kaydor, nor Aslam’s responsibilities of parenthood. What he did is good old fashioned grinding throughout his university years. By applying for internships to gain practical experience, combined with leveraging the exceptional contacts available to Crawford students, he landed a job with the World Bank. In addition, he made many valuable friendships he treasures to this day.

From Doyle, prospective students can learn perhaps one of the most broadly-applicable lessons; persistence can lead to prosperity. It doesn’t take great adversity or hardship to spur positive action. Anyone from any background can reap the benefits of hard work. There are few better places that a person can thrive in this way than the Crawford School of Public Policy.