Students spend summer learning how local government works

June 14, 2021

Jeremy Gustafson volunteers at Gather New Haven event

Seven Quinnipiac students are spending the summer getting a first-hand look at how municipal government works.

The students are part of Quinnipiac’s Presidential Public Service Fellowship Program, a long-term university initiative that supports students while they serve the local community full time in municipal government offices in Hamden and North Haven.

The fellows are selected from a pool of student-leaders, who will spend the summer applying their know-how to implement various beneficial local projects. Each student works under the mentorship of a town department head.
The fellowship is a partnership with the office of Quinnipiac President Judy Olian and Quinnipiac’s host town governments.  It is supported by a financial donor trust, and also with significant support from the federal work-study program. 

The fellows are: Haktan Ceylan of Danbury (Hamden mayor’s office); Ja’Vielle Foy of East Orange, New Jersey (Hamden Youth Services); Jeremy Gustafson of Orange (North Haven Public Works); William Hunter of Woodbridge (Hamden Arts & Recreation); Ohidiani Imevbore of Hamden (Hamden Economic Development and mayor’s office); Manavi Jain of Cheshire (Hamden town clerk); and Madison Stout of Berwick, Pennsylvania (Hamden mayor’s office).  

Launched in 2003, the fellowship program has placed well over 100 fellows into town government.  Scott McLean, professor of political science, directs the fellowship program. He said that the program is critical for continuing Quinnipiac’s mission into the 21st century.  

“These students are smart, idealistic campus leaders, and hungry for action that makes a difference,” McLean said.  “So many of our fellows have used this experience to go on to successful careers in the public service in government, in nonprofit and civic leadership.  I think that is because in local government, the questions are so much more practical, and so much less partisan, compared to the national level.” 

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