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Public Policy Fellowship Program

 

Meet the 2014 Fellows!

  Casey Albitz  -  Department: Child and Family Services  -  Primary Project: Healthcare Policies for Children Aging Out

Casey Albitz is a Ph.D Candidate in the Department of Sociology at Case Western Reserve University.
   
  Michelle Brzoska  -  Department: Development  -  Primary Project: Fair Housing Best Practices

After graduating from Rocky River High School in 2009, Michelle Brzoska attended The Ohio State University for her Bachelor’s in City and Regional Planning. She is currently attending the University of Cincinnati and will receive her Master’s of Community Planning in Spring 2015. Michelle is interested in housing and community development, and has worked previously for neighborhood-level community development organizations. She is grateful for the opportunity to spend a summer enjoying her hometown and working for the Cuyahoga County Department of Development, which allowed her to apply skills learned from her previous internships and academic studies.
“The fellowship program was a great learning experience. I was glad to have major projects of my own, along with the opportunity to work with people working in similar fields outside of Cuyahoga County government." – Michelle Brzoska, Department of Development
   

Michael Collier  -  Department: Public Safety and Justice Services  -  Primary Project: County Crime Analysis Center

Michael Collier is a 2013 graduate of Kent State University, and is currently pursuing a Master's of Public Administration with a focus on applied politics from the University of Akron. After graduating from Nordonia High School in 2009, Michael began a six-year enlistment in the U.S. Army National Guard, where he currently holds the rank of Sergeant and serves in a number of roles, including Public Affairs Representative and Physical Fitness NCO. As a devoted student of government, political enthusiast, and Northeast Ohio native, Michael hopes to work in the public sector to promote local civic engagement and enhance the collective public good through efficient, accountable government.

“The program provided me with a truly unforgettable, enriching immersion into county government, allowing me to gain unparalleled insight into both the day-to-day operations and "big picture" aspects of governance. The experience gained in Cuyahoga County's unique executive form of government equipped me with skills and knowledge applicable at any level—local, state, and national—and allowed me to see firsthand how government functions in a practical capacity.”  – Michael Collier, Department of Public Safety and Justice Services
   
Sundous Eddeb  -  Department: Executive Office - Economic Development  -  Primary Project: Urban Demolition Plan

Sundous Eddeb was born and raised a Clevelander. She attended Baldwin Wallace University for her undergraduate and declared International Relations and Political Science definitively. She was a part of the BW Model United Nations Team and was president of Spanish Club and the Muslim Student Association. Her interest in government work sprung from her time as an intern in former Congressman Dennis Kucinich's District Office. Economics became a part of her trajectory after taking the International Economics class and realizing this discipline would help her bridge gaps in governmental policy objectives. She pursued this interdisciplinary path and was able to join the four-member student team to China on a grant trip led by her economics professor, where she and her partner conducted research on the urban demolition and relocation policy of China. She volunteers with Global Cleveland as an English translation partner and assists with local events.

“The Fellowship demonstrated the County’s renewed leadership by allowing us students to explore what local government entails and how we can support the efforts to deliver on its genuine mission." – Sundous Eddeb, Executive Office
   
Chelsea Hill  -  Department: Communications  -  Primary Project: Research and Internal Communications

Chelsea Hill grew up in Lyndhurst and graduated from Brush High School in 2010. From there she attended the Ohio State University in Columbus, graduating in 2014 with majors in International Studies and French and a minor in Arabic. As an undergraduate, Chelsea interned with several Columbus-area non-profit organizations before working as a page in the office of Ohio Senator Tom Sawyer of Akron. She looks forward to using the skills and experience she gained as a Fellow upon return from a 7-month teaching commitment in France.

“As Fellows we got firsthand experience doing actual work for the County which is much more useful than the busywork a lot of other programs give to interns. It was also really informative about the challenges and functions of County government in general, and Cuyahoga County in particular.”  – Chelsea Hill, Department of Communications
   
Jennifer Lenart  -  Department: Regional Collaboration   Primary Projects: LakeStat, County Health Alliance

Originally from the Chicago suburbs, Jenn Lenart is finishing up her degree at Baldwin Wallace University in Economics and Biology. Her interests revolve around environmental issues, more specifically those that address fresh water quality. By working in Regional Collaboration during the Public Policy Fellowship, Jenn was able to merge her studies together to work on the County LakeStat page.

“Not only did the fellowship require me to apply my skillset in real world projects, the program increased my awareness of the ongoing efforts of various organizations who address fresh water quality issues, ultimately building my professional network.” – Jennifer Lenart, Department of Regional Collaboration
   
Michael Milano  -  Department: Law  -  Primary Project: IT Department Risk Assessment

Michael Milano grew up in Westlake, OH and graduated from Ohio State University in 2013 with a B.S. in Accounting and a minor in Economics. He is currently entering his second year of law school at the Cleveland Marshall College of Law. Michael hopes to one day have the opportunity to help facilitate society. He loves watermelon.

I had to put more thought into how others would be able to use and understand what I did, as opposed to simply appealing to a teacher or using the end product solely for myself.” – Michael Milano, Department of Law
   
 

Jessica Murphy  -  Department: Public Safety and Justice Services  -  Primary Project: Continuity of Operations Plan

Jessica received her Masters at Cleveland State University where she conducted research analyzing the role of equity in post-secondary student success practices. She will be working with AmeriCorps to combat issues of college persistence and completion at Lakeland Community College. In the future, she hope to use quantitative social science to effect decisions in educational policy.

I learned so much about project management during this time. I also observed the extra value generated from the fellowship by the interaction of engaged supervisors.– Jessica Murphy, Department of Public Safety and Justice Services

Public Policy Fellowship Program: June 2 – August 1, 2014

Overview

The Public Policy Fellowship Program was established in 2011 to cultivate the next generation of public sector leaders in Northeast Ohio.  Entrepreneurial and highly motivated undergraduate and graduate level students will gain a broad overview of county government through practical experience in a variety of policy areas. Working directly with the County Executive’s cabinet and staff, Fellows will have the opportunity to:

  • Make personal and professional connections with:
    • the County Executive and senior staff
    • County Council members and senior legislative staff
    • Other Fellows
    • Civic leaders across the region
  • Attend site visits to various county facilities
  • Develop new ideas for projects and policies
  • Draft policy proposals to address emerging issues
  • Learn and test new skills
  • Attend press conferences, County Council hearings, staff meetings, and strategic planning sessions
  • Plan and present a Fellow Seminar
   

Program Goals

  • Attract and engage the next generation of Northeast Ohio public servants
  • Provide a practical experience in Cuyahoga County government
  • Inspire effective and ethical public leadership for Northeast Ohio
  • Invigorate County projects by injecting fresh eyes and new perspectives

Other Program Features

  • Fellows will be assigned an agency site supervisor based upon their placement and assigned work. Additional assistance, feedback and monitoring will be provided by the Public Policy Fellowship Program Coordinator who is a member of the Executive’s staff. 
  • Each participant will be provided a workspace with information technology and access to other materials and resources as appropriate. 
  • Senior staff members will discuss their experiences in weekly lunch sessions.
  • Evaluations will be conducted at the end of the program.
  • Fellows will author a final report of their general experience and the specifics of the project. The report will enrich the fellow’s professional portfolio and provide direction for future county projects.
For additional information, please contact Jennifer Scofield, Office of County Executive Edward FitzGerald, at jscofield@cuyahogacounty.us or (216) 698-3022.


Past Fellows

2014 

2013 

2012 

2011 

                                      

2013 Public Policy Fellows