The Public Policy and Management Center (PPMC) employs several graduate research assistants each year. These are students working on their Master of Public Administration degrees who benefit from applied learning opportunities as they work alongside PPMC staff members on projects that advance public service.


Abigail Hammack
athammack@shockers.wichita.edu | (316) 978-6530

Abigail is a Wichita native with a bachelor's degree in Public Relations from Kansas State University. During her undergraduate education and after graduating in 2016, Abigail worked in higher education in the areas of student services and international education. Abigail is now pursuing her Master of Public Administration degree at WSU, and joined the PPMC as a graduate research assistant in 2019. Prior to deciding to return to school, Abigail was the Marketing Director for a regional economic development organization in Virginia. Her interest in the public sector remains in the areas of nonprofit leadership, and community and economic development.

Drake Koops
dmkoops@shockers.wichita.edu | (316) 978-6401

Drake began the Master of Public Administration program in Fall 2019 after graduating in May 2019 from Sterling College with undergraduate degrees in History and Criminal Justice: Pre-Law and a minor in Political Science. His hometown is Downs, Kan., a tiny town in North Central Kansas. He has been enjoying his time in Wichita getting used to all the traffic and fast food restaurants! In his free time, Drake can be found watching any and all types of movies, reading books, listening to podcasts, and playing with his two Standard Poodles. Drake's future career interest is serving as a Foreign Service Officer who runs the day-to-day operations of an embassy.

James Cox
jacox6@shockers.wichita.edu 

James was born in Fort Scott, Kansas, and holds a bachelor's degree in Political Science from Pittsburg State University. He began WSU's Master of Public Administration (MPA) program in 2020.  While obtaining his bachelor's, he interned for the city of Pittsburg and came to like government work, particularly economic development.  He has been politically active and has experience in legislative relations.  Upon completion of his MPA, James would like to work in economic development to help build the cities of the future and to show that there is more to economic development than tax breaks.  Eventually, he would like to lead a state or federal economic development agency.
 
Emily Thon

eathon@shockers.wichita.edu 

Emily is a Wichita native with a Bachelor’s degree in Field Studies Psychology that encompasses Psychology, Sociology, and Women’s Studies with a Minor in Human Resource Management from Wichita State University. During her undergraduate education, Emily served in Team building roles through her sorority and becoming invested in Animal rights and Animal Rescue Non-Profits and has since volunteered for 6 years through them. She has also worked professionally for a year in Human Resources for the Wichita Public Schools Administration office before graduating in 2020. Emily is now pursuing her Master of Public Administration degree at WSU, and joined the PPMC as a graduate research assistant in 2020.

Zoe Sisco

zarice@shockers.wichita.edu | (316) 573-6755

Zoe is a Wichita native with a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Emporia State University. During her undergraduate education, Zoe focused on federal and state policy, as well as geopolitical law. She has invested much of her time to the community through volunteer efforts at the VA hospital and United Methodist Open door, a homeless shelter in Wichita. After graduating from Emporia State University in May of 2020, Zoe jumped right into graduate school to work on her Masters degree in Public Administration with an emphasis on Nonprofit Management and City/County Management. Zoe is working her way through school as a graduate assistant and is planning on graduating in May of 2022. 

 

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