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UCL Department of Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy

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Alyssa Muck

Head of Government Delivery - Beam
MPA in Digital Technologies and Policy - 2021

Alyssa Much headshot

What were you doing prior to starting the STEaPP MPA?

Prior to starting the MPA, I spent seven years working in technology product, communications, and marketing at agencies in both London and San Francisco. I worked in account management, business development, and client services roles for clients at big tech companies, scale-ups, and start-ups.

Why did you choose to study at STEaPP?

The pandemic really forced a shift in my perspective. While I enjoyed my job, my “pandemic epiphany” gave me the push to focus full-time on what I was truly passionate about: social impact. I chose to study at STEaPP because I wanted to apply my existing experience in the tech sector with a better understanding of how digital technologies affect social change, and how to communicate and create policy in an increasingly digital future.

What was your favourite aspect of the MPA?

My favourite part of the MPA was the fact that we were learning about an ever-changing, always-relevant topic. The discourse around digital technologies and public policy is constantly evolving, so it was exciting to be keeping up with and learning about the latest developments in the field in real-time. I loved researching emerging technologies, drafting policy documents to cover topics like misinformation, and presenting technology-focused solutions for intersectional problems like climate change.

How has the STEaPP MPA shaped your experiences since leaving UCL?

The MPA at STEaPP helped to marry my existing knowledge of technology with a better understanding of policy, government, and the use of tech for social good – all of which led me to my current company: Beam. Beam is a social impact start-up that uses technology to support homeless people into stable work and housing. As Head of Government Delivery, I draw upon my MPA experience regularly to help understand how Beam can better collaborate with local and central government to deliver employment, training, and housing services to disadvantaged people in the UK.

What is the one piece of advice you would give to future candidates? 

You’ll get as much out of the course as you put into it, so don’t be afraid to get out of your comfort zone and be an active participant! Raise your hand, ask questions, and speak up – even if you’re doubting yourself. Some of the best discussions came from forcing myself to ask “silly” questions.