Started in 1992, the Michigan Political Leadership Program at Michigan State University recruits, trains and inspires tomorrow’s public policy leaders. The program gives 12 men and 12 women emerging leaders across Michigan the tools needed to develop a vision necessary to be successful in leadership positions and develop effective policies.
The program takes its fellows on a ten-month journey around Michigan learning about government and the policies affecting Michigan. Participants are required to attend one weekend session per month in order to effectively benefit from this unique experience.
Since its first class, the MLPL has granted certificates to over 500 fellows. The distinguished alumni include State Representative Rudy Hobbs, former chief of staff for Kevyn Orr Shani Penn and Bryan Barnhill, campaign manager for Mike Duggan.
“Before participating in MPLP, I never knew how bipartisanship really worked,” said Penn. “The experience that I received during my tenure as chief of staff to Mr. Orr strengthened my belief in how we can move forward when both sides work together. I am looking forward to continuing this same cooperation in my new role as senior strategy advisor to Governor Snyder. “
2011 alumni Bryan Barnhill commented, “On one hand, the MPLP program was a year-long intensive on the policy issues affecting our state. On the other, it was an extraordinary opportunity to develop long lasting relationships with current and future leaders of the state of Michigan.”
Now that a new session is under way, there is a new group of fellows ready to learn from professionals in both the public and private sector and garner hands on experience. One such individual, Corri Wofford, has been waiting for an opportunity to join the fellowship and considers herself lucky to have been selected. Currently, Wofford is the policy analyst and press secretary for Detroit City Council President Pro Tem Andre Spivey.
“I’m looking forward to learning more and developing relationships and learning from some of the best public minds in the state of Michigan,” Wofford said, “My goal is to become a better person in the area of public policy and have a better viewpoint when it comes to looking at issues.”
The MPLP selects from a diverse pool of candidates from all over Michigan and with varying political affiliations. Although the 2014 program is closed, applications for the 2015 program will be available in May 2014. Visit http://ippsr.msu.edu/MPLP/mplp.html for more information.