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“Public Service” – by Adam Sherman

Avatar of Matt Pruitt
Matt Pruitt

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When I joined the Peace Corps I had no idea it would fundamentally
change my lifeâ?Ts trajectory. Less than a year into my service I knew I

didnâ?Tt want to pursue a lucrative career in business as I had

previous planned. I wanted to continue making tangible and meaningful

differences in people’s lives once I returned home.



After three years of service in West Africa, I enrolled in the Evans

School of Public Affairs where I have developed and honed invaluable

policy analysis skills over the last two years. But during this time I

also discovered a passion for the legislative process and have come to

realize how equally critical a legal education is to my goal of

effecting change in Washington State through legislation.



In particular, I am especially interested in education policy. Both my

mother and my girlfriend are elementary school teachers and I have

witnessed first hand the powerful differences these amazing people make

in the next generation. But teachers are not always provided the tools

and resources necessary to do their jobs effectively. Just recently the

Washington State Supreme Court ruled that the Washington State

Legislature had failed to fulfill its paramount duty to adequately fund

K-12 education. When I graduate from law school, I plan to leverage my

policy and legal education to ensure that the legislature meets its

obligations and does so in a fiscally responsible manner. It’s is

critical that we invest in our state’s future by educating our state’s

children.



Mountains of evidence show that the better someone’s education is the

less they cost government in terms social services support, law

enforcement, and jails. Additionally they contribute positively to

governments. Educated individuals make more money, pay more in taxes,

and volunteer more of their time and money to charities than less

educated individuals.



As someone crafting legislation in Olympia I will work to make sure that

Washington State continues to make improvements to its education system

through appropriate legislation.



In order to do this, however, I will be incurring a substantial amount

of personal debt from student loans. I have chosen to pursue a career

that is personally fulfilling but does not offer the kind of financial

rewards that would have received had I chosen instead to pursue the MBA I

had originally intended on getting.



I believe my background, education, goals, and financial need make me a

well qualified candidate for this scholarship. I appreciate your

consideration.

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