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MPP/MBA Alum on Sanford and the Southern Experience

Raised near Los Angeles, Calif., Eric Nakano is no stranger to big cities. The fourth generation Japanese-American got his undergraduate degree in political science at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. When he headed to graduate school at age 29, Nakano wanted to experience something new. 


Jen Shen, PhD Candidate, Social Entrepreneur

For Jen Shen and Danny Heller, finding solutions to real-world problems involves looking at them from many different points of view. Shen, a PhD student, and Heller, now an MPP alum, formed Duke Interdisciplinary Social Innovators (DISI) in 2013 as a way for graduate students to work in teams with students in other academic disciplines on community impact projects with local nonprofits.


Q&A with MPP Alumna Anna Bryant

Now working as an education data analyst, Anna Bryant MPP’14 shared her experience as a master’s student at the Sanford School of Public Policy. Hear from this successful MPP alumna in her own words.


Nick Carnes: Examining our Legislatures

At every level of government, the people who make the laws in the United States come from much more privileged backgrounds than Americans as a whole. Members of Congress, state legislators, even city council members – all tend to be significantly wealthier, more educated, and more often from white-collar occupations than the citizens they represent. Although observers routinely downplay this disconnect as insignificant, in reality the upward-tilted composition of our political institutions has serious consequences for the balance of power between the haves and the have-nots in our political process.


PhD Alum Credits Her Success to Sanford Mentorship

Great mentorship can make the difference between success and failure in graduate school.


Alumnus Profile: Danny Werfel MPP'97

Photo of President Obama and Danny Werfel

Daniel Werfel MPP’97 established a reputation as a problem-solver during his 15 years of service at the White House Office of Management and Budget. That reputation led to his appointment as acting commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service in May 2013, when the agency was under fire for possible political discrimination.


Meet Idrissa Kamara, MIDP’02

After two months in Sudan, Idrissa Kamara MIDP’02 was ready to give up. He and his fellow humanitarian aid workers for Save the Children arrived in what is now South Sudan in March 2005 to help implement a basic health, water, hygiene and HIV/AIDS services program. They found themselves fighting intense heat, sleeping on dirt floors and treating contaminated water from a nearby river.


Michael Sorrell MPP'90/JD'94, Turnaround Artist

Michael Sorrell with PQC students

Lawyer and businessman Michael Sorrell MPP'90/JD’94 took the reins at Paul Quinn College, a historically black college (HBCU) in Dallas on the verge of collapse, in the spring of 2007. Sorrell turned the situation around with significant changes and accomplishments during his tenure.


Alumnus Profile: Ran Coble MPP'77

As the executive director of the North Carolina Center for Public Policy Research (NCCPPR), Ran Coble MPP’77 has had a long career in public policy, providing nonpartisan, independent research on issues important to the state. Coble recently announced his upcoming retirement in September from the position to which he has devoted the past 33 years.


Alumna Profile: Catherine Herrold PhD'13

When Catherine Herrold PhD’13 traveled to Cairo, Egypt, to conduct her dissertation research on philanthropy, she could not have anticipated finding herself in the midst of the political unrest of the Arab Spring.