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Julian Gocksch ‘14

​I’ve been working since July on the NYC Mayor’s Pre-K for All initiative. Mayor De Blasio campaigned on the idea of universal pre-Kindergarten, and so far it has been his top priority and biggest success since he took office last year. I have been working with the Pre-K for All Outreach Team. Our goal has been to reach as many families as possible in order to fill as many free, full day, high quality pre-K seats as possible. We exceeded expectations last summer and we have so far been exceeding expectations during this current enrollment period.

My official title is ‘Community Coordinator’ and we are employed by the NYC Department of Education. That said, since this is a brand new office started by the mayor, we operate as part of the Mayor’s Office, across the street from City Hall. The job is very fast-paced; it is very much a campaign-type atmosphere, which I have enjoyed. The hours can be grueling at times, but the people I work and the ‘tolle stimmung und Enthusiasmus’ they create in our office every day have made it a wonderful experience. It has been a great introduction to politics, community organizing, education, and the ‘real world’ in general.

I think a liberal arts education, and particularly a Trinity education, has helped me in manifest ways. Although my German proficiency hasn’t necessarily been of much use in this job (the German-only speaking demographic is not necessarily the biggest in NYC), the tools I picked up along the way have certainly helped me make a pretty seamless transition into the working world. As cliche as it sounds, the liberal arts education teaches you how to think. It has helped me deal with the various tasks and responsibilities that are thrown my way each day.