Meet the Sackton Fellows

Matthew Gandy is from Cave Creek, Arizona, and an ASU alumnus, graduating with a B.S in Justice Studies in 2018. Matthew is now pursuing a Master of Public Administration with a concentration in Non-Profit Administration. He is inherently driven, and from a young age, he embodied both leadership and collaboration, two traits he credits for his aspiration to become a public servant. Matthew is extensively involved in the community and is the president of an organization named First Gen Scientist, a group of passionate college students who provide mentorship and STEM-based activities to local, underserved youth through afterschool programs. Following graduation, Matthew plans to work in local government. He hopes to help implement educational workshops for all ages in underserved communities, through collaboration with the non-profit sector.  

Jorge Suarez is a Colombian-American currently in the Masters of Public Policy program.  He holds a Bachelor’s a degree in Industrial Engineering from a Colombian university and a second B.S in Public Service and Public Policy (Nonprofit concentration) from ASU. Jorge has been involved with nonprofit organizations around the Phoenix area and is currently serving as a graduate research assistant in the ASU School of Public Affairs. His professional goals are to work for governmental organizations such as the UN, OAS, or development banks so he can positively impact the lives of people in underdeveloped countries. Jorge is especially interested in promoting development from innovated practices that involve network societies, governance, and sovereignty from a local to global perspective.

Gracie Valdez is the 2019 Sackton Scholar and is currently pursuing the Master of Public Administration program. She obtained a bachelor of science in agriculture from Texas A&M University and a master of arts in international relations from St. Mary’s University. From previous and current studies, she has developed an interdisciplinary mindset with which to analyze issues and collaborate with people of various backgrounds to find solutions. Her professional goal is to work in public service positions where she can incorporate diverse perspectives and work toward the wellbeing of communities being served.