by Rosabella Stowe, Public Administration, M.S.’18
When I finally decided to pursue my graduate degree I wanted to be a part of a university family that was reputable both academically and ethically, relatively small and would hold me to the highest academic standards; I wanted to be challenged personally and academically. In 2013 I was having a conversation with one of my coworkers about my desire to pursue my master’s degree and he asked if I had heard of Florida Institute of Technology; he was a student at FIT during this time. After some extensive research a few weeks later, I had found my school.
It took some time, though, to pursue my master of public administration degree because the timing never seemed right and one day I decided that if I waited for everything to align perfectly, I would never pursue my dream. I decided to get the process started in the summer of 2015. I always wanted to earn my degree in Public Administration because I am a city employee and hope to work within the government structure until I retire. Austin (and Texas as a whole) is a prolific city and in the 10 years that I have lived here, challenges related to housing, jobs and overall affordability continue to plague city administrators and leaders. What the master of public administration degree will allow me to do is pursue job opportunities that directly contribute to the city’s plans geared towards improving the standard and quality of living for its citizens. Budgetary concerns loom large but we live in a time when people do not seem to care about the behind-the-scenes machinations of where the money comes from; their primary concerns are to have their immediate needs met. It is the job of public administrators to help implement public policy initiatives that make the best use of taxpayer funds and while this is no easy task, it can be and has been done. I am definitely up to the larger challenge, thanks to the added knowledge I have acquired from FIT!
The importance of giving back has always been important to me and as a lifelong volunteer, I will use my newfound academic credentials in my church community and the outside community as well. Opportunities to volunteer are endless in the Austin community and I encourage everyone to aspire to give back, no matter how small, to their community because the people whom we serve could be us some day. The satisfaction that comes from knowing that I get to brighten someone’s day every time I touch their hand, or look into eyes full of gratitude and joy, is truly inexplicably fulfilling.
As a newly minted graduate of FIT, I will continue to encourage prospective students to strongly consider Florida Institute of Technology because of its high academic standards and fabulous faculty and staff. Pursuing a college degree at any level is not an easy transition or goal, but as long as a person is willing to make the necessary sacrifices and to study hard, it will be well worth it. Walking across the stage to receive my diploma with honors is, by far, my greatest academic achievement thus far. The amazing joy of knowing that I was able to celebrate my success with my family, fiance and a roomful of fellow graduates and faculty, is one I will always remember.
Finally, to anyone considering FIT, know that you are aspiring to become a permanent member of a unique family of Panthers that includes luminaries like Astronaut Sunita Williams, Astronaut Kathryn P. Hire, Astronaut Joan Higginbotham, retired U.S. Army General Ann E Dunwoody, and our Spring 2018 Commencement Speaker Mr. Vikram Verma, CEO of 8×8, Inc. Remember always that preparation and perseverance are the keys to academic success and that the professors are always available and willing to guide you, mentor you and walk besides you as you aspire to make your future and that of others a better one.