Trudy Lewis MPA’04

I credit my success in the field to the strong quantitative skills required by the program at UT Dallas.

Home: Dallas, Texas

UT Dallas Degree: Master of Public Affairs, 2004
Profession: District Director for U. S. Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson

My Work

As District Director I oversee all District office operations. Additionally, I represent Congresswoman Johnson by travelling throughout the district to keep up to date on local concerns.

Honors/accolades, additional degrees received, and/or previous work/positions held

I began my career as a budget intern at the City of Irving during my third semester of the master’s program. I worked at the City of Arlington and the City of Irving in progressively more responsible roles until I was named City Manager of Glenn Heights. At the time of my appointment as City Manager, I was only the fourth black female and the youngest to ever be selected as a City Manager in Texas.

The Value of My Degree

I credit my success in the field to the strong quantitative skills required by the program at UT Dallas. I was forced for the first time to have a study group and a tutor for economics, practical application of theory through internships, open dialogue/discussion with fellow students, and public case scenarios for debate, and learned from a diversity of thought in my professors. I went from being an entry-level graduate student in January 2003 with no previous government experience to a City Manager in 10 years in June 2013.

My EPPS Success

The University of Texas at Dallas MPA program provided me with the right mixture of courses, fellow students, and professors to propel my career. I was able to explore the public sector field with internships while gaining technical quantitative skills in a relatively short period of time. Through my enrollment and even after graduation, the network of fellow students and alumni has been a key component to my professional success. I encourage all prospective and current students to ask themselves if they are prepared for the next big thing that may come their way. You cannot determine every opportunity before it presents itself but you can be prepared when it comes. If the answer to those questions is anything but a resounding yes, get back to studying and develop yourself.