Blair Jones



MPA '19

Current location

Ottawa, ON


Master of Public Administration, Dalhousie University
Bachelor of Science Physchology (Honours) & Biology, St. Mary's University

Current employment

Policy Analyst, Office of Strategic Policy & Planning, Public Health Agency of Canada



How was your experience in the MPA internship program?
I completed my internship with Environment & Climate Change Canada in their Atlantic regional office as an Analyst on the Regional Analysis and Relations Team in the Strategic Policy Branch. During my internship, I had the opportunity to provide regular analysis and briefing to my supervisor, manager and the Regional Director General on a number of topics including the offshore oil and gas and ocean plastics, and prepared for several Ministerial visits including planning for the G7 Environment, Energy, and Oceans Minister’s meeting. To my surprise, I ended up receiving a Departmental Award for my contributions in planning the meeting!

How did you get to your current position?
The MPA program actually helped me to secure my current position! During my second year Applied Economics class, a project opportunity was posted in collaboration with the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) to further explore public health issues as they relate to economic impacts. After indicating my interest in health policy, I was offered a telephone interview with a senior manager that went very successfully. Because I had completed an internship with the federal government, I could be bridged in on a full-time basis with the Strategic Policy Division as a Policy Analyst working on Indigenous Policy shortly after completing my course work. For the last year, I have had the luxury of supporting a number of horizontal initiatives such as the implementation of the Arctic and Northern Policy Framework and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Actions. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, I have been asked to help support the increased workload of PHAC by tracking and coordinating efforts on emerging policy items. Never underestimate the power of seeking opportunities and networking!

Any advice for future MPA students?
Get involved, network, and seek leadership opportunities! Many of my achievements have come from being able to draw on leadership experience from volunteer activities, such as running charitable events, student advocacy, and organizing conferences. I had the opportunity to further develop these skills at Dalhousie and through the MPA program by getting involved with the Public Administration Student Society, the Atlantic Conference on Public Administration, and Cystic Fibrosis Canada’s Shinerama Program. Even after graduation, I continue to stay involved in charitable and public administration networks, such as PHAC’s Young Professionals Network, the National Capital Region’s Chapter of the Institute of Public Administration Canada, and the Shinerama Program. These opportunities have connected me with a wide-range of friends and colleagues that I can lean on for support and mentorship as I continue to advance my career.