One Alumna Shares How She’s Applying Her MPA to Her New Career as Director

Student & Alumni Stories Government & Civic Engagement

Jackney Prioly Joseph knows a thing or two when it comes to public policy and the inner workings of government. She gained experience in City Hall by working in the trenches alongside one of Boston’s longest-serving mayors, Thomas M. Menino, and then by joining forces with one of the city’s up-and-coming council members, Ayanna Pressley, someone whom she admired even before starting her career.

And she accomplished all this while earning her Master of Public Administration from Northeastern University.

Now that she’s graduated, Joseph is applying what she’s learned, both from the classroom and from City Hall, to her new career. Joseph is the director of an educational program called Future Ready Massachusetts, which helps kids from middle school to high school prepare for college and career.

As director, Joseph is constantly on the go, meeting with high-ranking community members, administering her organization’s website, fundraising, blogging, producing podcasts, and also serving as a link between the often convoluted educational system and community stakeholders.

But for her, it’s all worth it. She learned to successfully juggle a variety of projects when she simultaneously held jobs and attended classes as a working student at Northeastern.

“One thing for me is, I love a challenge,” Joseph says. “I found a lot of what we talked about in the classroom, the classes, the teachers—they prepared me for the work I’m doing. If you want something that’s applicable, not just theory, and to learn from professors in the field—in politics or government—and to apply learning to the job you are in, then you’ll find that at Northeastern.”