Master of Public Policy and Global Affairs, 2017

Where did Talia work?

Work Term 1:
Outreach and Diversity Plan Fire Rescue, City of Richmond


What were Talia’s responsibilities?

Talia joined Richmond Fire-Rescue (RFR) as a Policy Analyst and Researcher where she independently led a research study to identify the community’s needs and perceptions of emergency response services. To accomplish this, Talia conducted a comprehensive review of Richmond’s demographic profile and the existing policy framework to identify programming needs. She worked closely with the Community Outreach and Public Education Team to evaluate public education programs and resources. In order to gain insight into the community’s needs in terms of emergency response, Talia organized and facilitated 10 focus groups that involved approximately 100 community members.

What skills did Talia gain?

Talia further refined her research skills and developed a deeper understanding of research design. Through her project Talia was able to explore her creativity to organize and present data in an engaging and accessible format. She also gained confidence in leading stakeholder consultation and establishing professional relationships through a vast network.

What was Talia’s most memorable experience?

Having interacted with community members and heard their concerns and insights into community building, Talia reaffirmed her belief in public policy and returned to school more determined than ever to harness her education for the public good.

How did this project impact Talia’s career journey?

Following the co-op term, Talia’s Fire-Rescue Community Outreach and Public Education Plan (2018-2023) was unanimously adopted by Richmond City Council, which was a very important moment in her career. In Talia’s own words, “This was my first experience working as an independent researcher and this time was an exceptional experience in my life as it transformed me from a student to a professional.” Talia is currently back at RFR as Coordinator of Projects and Planning and will be beginning a new research study to identify opportunities and challenges for fire prevention in the city.