How Master of Public Affairs program sparked Melanie Muenzer’s passion for higher education
Melanie Muenzer’s (Wilson) final paper at Indiana University Northwest made her realize exactly what she wanted to do with her career.
In the paper, Muenzer, who graduated with her Master of Public Affairs (MPA) from IU Northwest in 2005, looked at three counties in Northwest Indiana — Lake, LaPorte and Porter — comparing the socio-economic status against them and how students, from K-12, were performing academically.
“I was mortified when I did that … the difference between the wealthier counties and Lake County when you correlated with socio-economic status,” Muenzer said. “I was just like, ‘Well, this is broken. I want to go to the Department of Education, and I want to fix education policy.’”
That’s the goal Muenzer set when she departed Northwest Indiana, the place she’d called home most entire life and where her parents still live.
Muenzer did just that.