What Alumni Say About IPA

photo of Marlon Brown in front of Michigan state capitolMarlon Brown

Take a look at what Marlon Brown said in an interview about his career and his experiences at IPA looking back, now that he’s been in the workforce for more than five years.

current position: Specialty Courts Management Information System (MIS) Coordinator, Michigan Supreme Court’s State Court Administrative Office, Warren, Mich.
UD degree: MPA, University of Delaware 2009, State and Local Government, City Planning and Management


Q.What is your current position?

A.I am the Specialty Courts Management Information System (MIS) Coordinator for the Michigan Supreme Court’s State Court Administrative Office. I also hold a political appointment on the Warren (Mich.) city planning commission.  

Q.What experiences have you had that helped qualify you for this position?

A.My campaign experience obviously gave me a great lesson in politics and the do’s and don’t’s of local elections.  However, I also gained a greater respect for political candidates and public officials.  From a more practical standpoint, I learned that playing politics is just as important, if not more so, than knowing policy. In addition, I learned that it’s important to follow your passions in life, even when there are obstacles in your way and the odds are against you.

Q.What challenges are unique to you as MIS Coordinator?

A.One of the unique challenges of my position is serving as a resource person to district and circuit courts that use the state’s case-management [software] system. A second challenge was simply learning the judicial system and becoming acquainted with problem-solving courts and alternative-sentencing programs.

Q.What excites you about your job?

A.I have always been passionate about government and public service, so working for my home state is truly exciting. I am also humbled each day that I walk into the Michigan Hall of Justice. The building itself reminds me of the privilege that I have in serving the people of Michigan.

Q.How did your experiences at UD and through IPA help prepare you for what you’re doing now?

A.Government careers require you to become knowledgeable on a lot of topics, and the graduate school experience at UD and IPA provided the necessary tools to become both proficient and fluent on matters of public policy. My biggest learning curve was adjusting to how the Judiciary works. However, the MPA program’s curriculum in organizational management and leadership provided a solid base of knowledge for me to work in just about any environment.  

Q.Looking back, what is the most important thing you learned at IPA that has helped you the most?

A.Having had the perspective of working in the other branches of government is an extremely valuable asset to have in the Judiciary, and I obtained this experience [while at IPA] through both the Legislative Fellows Program and my summer internship with the Mayor of Baltimore.