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Chas Alamo

'11 MA (Econ)/ '11 MPA

United States Peace Corps member


Chas Alamo lives in Acobamba, Junín, Perú, where he serves as a United States Peace Corps member. Alamo joined the Peace Corps to be a community economic development volunteer in the high Peruvian Andes. He received his bachelor’s degree in Political Science, cum laude, from the University of California Riverside in 2007. He later went on to receive a dual master’s degree in Economics and Public Administration from Maxwell in 2011.

 

Alamo currently teaches a youth financial education course at two local high-schools, which include workshops on long-term planning, making smart financial investments, choosing a career path, professionalism, and interviewing skills. He has also worked to help start community banks that provide access to credit and savings for communities without access to traditional financial institutions.

Prior to his work at Peace Corps, Alamo served as a senior fiscal and policy analyst with the California Legislative Analyst's Office, which provides nonpartisan policy and budgetary advice to the state legislature. Alamo was primarily responsible for revenue forecasts of sales taxes and property taxes, as well as, providing policy advice to the legislature on public and private housing issues.

Alamo recalls entering Maxwell without much practical work experience, but with the training he received he was able to obtain a great internship in the Sacramento policy world, which eventually led to his dream-job with the Legislative Analyst's Office. His time at Maxwell provided him with the technical skills that he later found he would need in applying public administration and policy frameworks quantitatively to policy issues in California.

 

A stand-out course for Alamo was Dr. Parmer's course on Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. Dr. Parmer’s insistence on clear and thoughtful writing prepared him for the high caliber of work that would be asked of him after Maxwell. Alamo went on to say, “The director at my previous job, a job largely dependent on clear and thoughtful writing, used to say, "Strong writing isn't simply the sign of a strong writer, it actually the sign of a strong thinker." Dr. Parmer's emphasis on this point helped prepare me to communicate effectively in life after Maxwell.”

 

During his time at Maxwell, Alamo was fortunate enough to receive a graduate assistant position, which he held in The Center for Policy Research. He believes if not for the graduate assistant position, he would still be paying off his student loans and would not have been able to join the Peace Corps - a once-in-a-lifetime experience to him. “The post-Maxwell financial flexibility that my graduate position gave me now means the world to me, as I write this from 10,000 feet in the Peruvian Andes, Alamo stated.” His advice to current Maxwell students is to make great friends and invest in relationships with professors and staff, as both will last forever.

Like to connect with Chas Alamo?  Alamo welcomes alumni and student emails via SU’s ‘Cuse Community.”