University at Albany
 

Q & A with Michael Cassidy, BA '08, MPA '10

If you had to condense your job description into an elevator pitch, how would it read?

Michael: I assist in the day-to-day oversight of all state agencies, departments and authorities. I also work on special projects on an as-needed basis.

What about your job inspires/excites you every day?

Michael: The best part about my job is you never see the same thing twice and there is a new challenge every day. One day I will be working on a billion-dollar bond issuance, the next day I will be working on the Governor's energy efficiency initiative, and the day after that I will be working on disaster-preparedness issues. There is never a dull moment in a job like this.

How did Rockefeller College prepare you for your career?

Michael: Rockefeller really taught me how to think critically and approach situations with a problem-solving attitude. Often times in government people like to say, "We can't do that." Rockefeller really instilled in me a mindset that I still use in my job today — "How can we find a way to get it done?"

What is one piece of advice you would share with a current Rockefeller student?

Michael: Develop strong relationships with your classmates. Rockefeller alumni make up a significant portion of the state government apparatus — along with other levels of government — and you'd be surprised how often you cross paths with people you took a class with.

When you're not on the job, where can you be found?

Michael: When I do have some free time, I do a lot of reading on political and governmental history. I recently finished reading Showdown at Gucci Gulch by Jeff Birnbaum and Alan Murray, which chronicles the passage of the bipartisan Tax Reform Act of 1986 against all odds.