Mariia Zaburko, MPA Student (Photo submitted)
Mariia Zaburko, MPA Student (Photo submitted)

My internship at the Public Service Commission

Mariia Zaburko is a MPA student from the University of Regina campus, and a 2015 Provincial Intern at the Public Service Comission.

Hello! My name is Mariia Zaburko. I am interning with Strategic Planning and Policy, Public Service Commission (PSC), Government of Saskatchewan. My mentors are the Executive Director and the Senior HR Policy and Legislative Advisor in that branch.

To be honest, a year ago I was very nervous about being a successful candidate and receiving a good placement. At that point in time I did not know a lot about PSC. My worries disappeared after the first meeting with my mentors. I am grateful to the internship committee for pairing me up with this team.

In September, since week one I was plugged into the policy work. Development of the Employee Recognition policy step by step under supervision and ongoing support from my mentor will be my lifetime memory. Finally, I have experienced the realities of the policy world and it was breathtaking. Determining the purpose, goals and possible implications of the policy and going through multiple drafts and rounds of consultations taught me how to stay patient and focused on the scope of the issue we are trying to address.

Another valuable learning opportunity allowed me to support research and build a presentation around new HR Wall Walk metrics. In the end, I attended a presentation to Deputy Ministers’ led by my mentor, and participated in the discussion. I learned a lot of technical details about HR metrics, as well as how to interact with Executive level officials and handle their questions.

In the coming weeks we will start developing key elements of the Strategic HR Policy Framework, which has already become my passion. I consider myself a very lucky student, as I have an opportunity to learn about key policy-making components through supporting my mentor in setting up this holistic framework.

Besides everyday work, there is also a team factor. I truly admire the people I work with. Their trust and inviting style are the best motivation drivers for me to complete my internship successfully. My mentors and co-workers help me to grow professionally. In future I would like to continue our professional relationship and possibly my education (hopefully I will pursue a degree in HR management).

I believe that it does not matter where you have been placed as an intern. What matters are the people and personalities, your desire and ability to build sincere professional relationships and openness to learning.

The JSGS Executive Internship is a highlight of my MPA program and it will positively impact the start of my professional career. I recommend everyone to apply and participate in this rare learning opportunity. In the end, I want to say THANK YOU to our school, the interview panel, the PSC, my mentors and co-workers.