Public Service: Video Transcript

Mark Cannon (BA Public Administration, Miami, 1986) [Chief of Staff for the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials International]: When I received the Truman Scholarship, which is awarded to those that have outstanding potential for public service, I was very much on a track of wanting to serve government in some fashion. I probably had in my mind at the time, more elected office, but my career has focused much more on being a careerist and actually working in the non-profit sector, serving government and serving the aims of government.

Right now, I'm the chief of staff, and I have a cabinet of ten different departments, and one of the things that I get a kick out is coming, bringing all of those departments together to work in an interdisciplinary nature to solve an intractable issue, and I have to think that that really goes back to the preparation that I had at Miami and its liberal arts, its interdisciplinary, multi-disciplinary type of focus.

One of the standout experiences at Miami that goes beyond the boundaries of the campus was my work with the Ohio Student Association. I was the ASG representative, and it really gave me the opportunity to work with peers at the other public institutions around the state. We would travel to different campuses for the meetings, we would deal with the kinds of funding decisions that were happening at the state level. It was a real opportunity to make an impact, make a difference that helped me understand that that's where I really wanted to focus my career as well.

That was probably what was most rewarding about being in the College of Arts and Science, is how you are able to make those linkages out to the real world and how it took multiple disciplines, it took a broad base of knowledge to bring forward into those kinds of situations.

[May 2014]