Morgan Prudden '15 Works as a Legislative Aide

April 05, 2016

Morgan Prudden

We caught up with Morgan about the Barbara Lee Fellowship Program — and working for Representative Denise Garlick!

What was your major at Simmons? What's your current job?

I majored in sociology and minored in political science. I'm the legislative aide to Representative Denise Garlick, House Chair of the Joint Committee on Elder Affairs. 

What's a typical day like at your job?

I don't know if there is a "typical" day at my job! And I'm thankful for that — there's no getting bored! My job mostly consists of constituent services, which can entail sorting through the MassHealth system with someone, figuring out if someone is eligible for early retirement, or working with state agencies to improve road conditions in town. I do whatever I can to help the members of the community.

I'm also responsible for managing the Representative’s social media accounts, meeting with constituents to hear their opinions on pending legislation and generally supporting the committee through bill and informational hearings.

How did you hear about your job? What was the job application process like?

I was incredibly fortunate in my job search. I remember being completely overwhelmed with the idea of job searching and felt like I was delving into this huge world that I didn’t know how to navigate. However; that was before I started my internship at the State House. I'm currently working in the same office that I interned with. I knew very quickly into my internship that the individuals I was working with shared similar values, prioritized similar issues and had a similar dedication to public service as myself. When the Representative was named the Chair of the committee, she had the opportunity to hire more staff, and when this became evident, I jumped at the opportunity to join the Garlick Team. 

What is your favorite part of your job?

This is a no brainer! Whenever a constituent expresses appreciation or can tell me how much our work has helped them — there is nothing more rewarding. No matter how many people I have the opportunity to help, this feeling will never diminish.

If you could come back and take one class at Simmons what would it be?

This is a long list. I transferred to Simmons for my junior and senior years of college so I didn’t have the same amount of time to take the electives that I would have liked to. Ideally, I would have double majored in political science, but I simply did not have the time. I always remind myself that there is always graduate school to delve into the areas that I wasn’t able to explore during my undergraduate career. 

How did Simmons help prepare you for your career?

Simmons helped me in more ways that I could have imagined. I had a professor that I used as somewhat of a career coach during my senior year. She was an invaluable asset in helping me write my resume. She would talk through work situations with me that I didn’t know how to handle and just generally was available to me whenever I needed it. I am incredibly fortunate to have had this resource.

The relationships I developed at Simmons are also incredibly valuable to me already in my career. There is a connection you feel with other Simmons alumnae/i and that comes with respect and care. I've already had several instances when I have been able to seek out help or guidance from a fellow Simmons alum. 

What was it like being a Barbara Lee Fellow? What did you learn?

Being a Barbara Lee Fellow was the most beneficial of my experiences at Simmons. It gave me first hand knowledge of the Massachusetts legislative and budget processes. I could go on and on about what this entails, but just know, before this experience, I didn’t know I knew so little.

How did the Barbara Lee Fellowship expand your interest and knowledge in the political sphere? 

With experience, I understand how state politics can have such a large impact on an individual’s life. It’s what happens here at home that is going to change your day-to-day life and while national politics are fun and everyone is interested, there’s so much going on within our own communities that is of equal or greater importance.