MPA Spotlight: Cary Casler

March 21, 2024
Cary Casler

My background 

I am from Goodyear, Arizona, born and raised. I graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Arizona in spring 2023, with a major in Political Science and a minor in sociology.  Growing up, I was a competitive dancer from the ages of 3-18 and was a member of the Arizona Pomline for 2 seasons. I am the youngest of 4 daughters and have 2 wonderful parents as well as a nephew and a niece. 


My professional experience

I currently work as a Transportation Planner at the Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG). MAG is the metropolitan planning organization for greater Maricopa for areas such as transportation. Specifically, I work with the Arterial Life Cycle Program that focuses on arterial projects in the member agencies. In addition to working at MAG, I am also an assistant coach for the pomline (dance team) at Salpointe Catholic High School. 

Recent accomplishments

I recently was hired at MAG full-time after interning as a Transportation Funding intern over the summer! I also recently received a scholarship from the Phoenix chapter of Women's Transportation Seminar that will assist in my pursuit to finish my Master of Public Administration this May. In my personal life, I got engaged last May to my high school sweetheart! 

Why I chose the MPA program

As an intern at the Arizona House of Representatives, I found many of the individuals that worked in the positions I wanted to work in had an MPA. My advisor mentioned the Accelerated Master's Program and I jumped at the chance to get my master's with only 1 additional year after my bachelors. 

How the MPA program has impacted me

The MPA program has helped me develop a deeper understanding of local and state level government and that directly informs my job currently. It has given me a deeper understanding of the work I currently do and what I hope to do in the future. A course that has particularly stuck with me has been Public Organizational Theory with Professor Milward. My organization is currently going through somewhat of a renaissance and this class gave me an understanding of why it's necessary to evolve and change as a public organization. 

My plans post-graduation

I am pleased to continue working at MAG, but I'm most excited to get married!