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MPA | Prospective Students
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Student Profiles

Texas MPAs are a diverse and dedicated group of students. Despite being part of a challenging, competitive program, they work together in classes, volunteer to share their experiences with prospective students, help out at events and provide career advice to their peers.

Meet some of the current MPA students in the profiles below and don't forget to check out our student blog for a view into the life of a Texas MPA student.

Click on the photos to the left to learn more about each MPA student.

Brooks Butler

Traditional MPA '14

Home Town: New Orleans, LA | Jackson, TN
Current Track: Tax

Why did you choose to attend The University of Texas at Austin?

I chose UT because of it’s great reputation and because Austin is a fantastic city to live in. I know it’s just one year, but why spend a valuable year of your life in a place you won’t enjoy that much?

Why the Texas MPA program?

I wanted to get into accounting and this was the best program available.

What’s your favorite spot on campus?

The area around the North entrance of McCombs. It stays pretty shaded with all the oak trees in the area, you get a good view of the tower, and there are plenty of areas to sit and just hang out. It’s a great place to get a breath of fresh air between classes.

Courtney Crosby

Integrated MPA '14

Home State: Houston, TX
Current Track: Financial Reporting & Assurance

Why did you choose to attend The University of Texas at Austin?
I fell in love with Austin when I visited in high school, and I knew an education at UT would give me a strong and diverse skill set that would allow me to pursue many career options in the future.

Why the Texas MPA program?
The strong job prospects made the decision to apply an easy one. Plus, I knew the MPA and the Business Honors Program would be a strong and comprehensive combination that would allow me to excel in the future.

What’s your favorite spot on campus?
I have enjoyed discovering all of the hidden gems on UT campus over the past four years. I have visited the Blanton Art Museum, the Stark Center for Physical Culture and Sports, the Harry Ransom Center, the Natural Science Center Museum, the top of the UT Tower, and the Painter Hall telescope dome. In addition, I have wandered all over campus and admired the diverse architecture. It is incredible to have so much culture, science, and art in our own backyard, and it makes me proud to be a Longhorn.

Joel Francia

Traditional MPA '14

Home Town: Manila, Philippines
Current Track: Tax

Why the Texas MPA program?
When I visited UT and observed a class, I saw how dynamic the class interaction was between the professor and the students. It was refreshing to see this drive for excellence. At that point, I knew this program was the right one for me. It all made sense why the Texas MPA program is the #1 in the country.

Jonathan Grabert

Traditional MPA '14

Home State: Austin, TX
Current Track: Managerial

Why did you choose to attend The University of Texas at Austin?

You just can’t underestimate the value of the reputation that UT provides. When I applied, I knew I was coming in to the best-rated program, and that rating is because I’ll get first-class instructors, outstanding courses, and active career services. The opportunities that come from a UT MPA are just unlimited.

Why the Texas MPA program?
I came to UT from another school’s accounting master’s program. I opted to switch over because of UT’s reputation and the fantastic recruiting program that McCombs afforded. I chose accounting because I’m fairly numbers-minded and accounting gives a practical application of that. In addition, I find the evolution of accounting and the means by which it presents itself to be very interesting. It’s a system that’s grown and evolved over time based on the changing needs of the community.

What’s your favorite spot on campus?
I’ve been spending a lot of time over in the eating area of the Student Activities Center. It’s right next to McCombs, has plenty of space to sit and plug in my phone or computer, and I can get some pretty decent food. I get bored pretty easily if it’s super quiet or nothing’s going on, and there are always people coming and going over there. (Though I also like feeding the squirrels just outside of the Blanton museum, too…)

Ally Newman

Integrated MPA '14

Home State: Houston, TX
Current Track: Taxation

Why did you choose to attend The University of Texas at Austin?
I instantly became a longhorn at heart when I took my first tour of the campus my junior year of high school. When I was standing on the main mall, surrounded by the presence of the Tower, the Capitol, the Austin skyline, I felt as if I had the opportunity to become part of something bigger than myself.

Why the Texas MPA program?
I come from a family of accountants, so majoring in accounting was the last thing I wanted to do. However, I attended an accounting camp here at McCombs in high school and knew this program was for me.

What’s your favorite spot on campus?
My favorite spot would have to be sitting in the stands of the football stadium in the mass of burnt orange. There are few things in this world that rival singing the Texas Fight Song with around 100,000 longhorn fans.

April Stange

Integrated MPA '16

Home State: Denison, TX
MPA Track: Undeclared, but considering Taxation or Financial Assurance

Why did you choose to attend The University of Texas at Austin?
I was born and raised a small town girl but I was ready for bigger things. The University of Texas seemed like the perfect stepping stone to a new experience in the state that I love. After getting into McCombs School of Business, my decision to come to UT was even more solidified. My grandfather always hoped that one day one of his grandchildren would become a student at UT. That did not seem like a big factor in my decision to go to UT at the time of my application, but I am a strong believer that things happen for a reason so I cannot help but think that it subconsciously played into my decision to come here.

Why the Texas MPA program?
As known by most, there are so many great reasons to choose the MPA program at UT. It is an accomplished program. You are guaranteed a great future. The resources in the program surpasses even that of McCombs. The program itself is like being in another organization or “family.” Even with all these great reasons in front of me it was still a last minute decision when I applied to the Texas MPA program. I already know that was one of the best decisions I ever made.

What's your favorite spot on campus?
My favorite spot on campus is probably the SAC because you can study, grab food, get coffee, and there are balconies on the second floor with great chairs! But the COOLEST spot on campus is in the ACE building off Speedway and 24th in the TACC Vislab. It is a giant computer screen where you can move objects around with your hands like you would see in a movie. They allow you to walk in sometimes and just play around on it. I recommend everyone to check it out sometime!