Chief Administrative Officer, Municipality of Strathroy-Caradoc
Greg McClinchey started in politics at age 15 when he volunteered for his local Member of Parliament and has since learned the ins and outs of the political world while on the job. Now the Chief Administrative Officer for the Ontario municipality of Strathroy-Caradoc, he decided to “codify” what he’d learned by attending the Riddell Graduate Program in Political Management.
You had 23 years of experience in politics. Why did you pursue this degree?
I wish I had done this 20 years ago, especially Paul Wilson’s class on the federal budget cycle. It would have saved me a lot of frustration. Instead, I learned by trial and error. But I wanted to do this to in some way validate my work experience.
What was the highlight for you?
The people: some of the richest learning came from discussions with my fellow students. There were international students, a Senate staffer, a provincial MPP, members of the diplomatic corps, and human rights observers.
In addition to that, the faculty who teach in the program served in the highest levels of the federal government and the guest speakers included a former prime minister, a former chief of staff, media pundits, and industry leaders. It was an amazing experience to have that kind of access to these people.
How will this degree help you as you continue along your career path?
I don’t see it as another arrow in my quiver—I view it as the quiver itself. It ties together all of the ideas and experiences I’ve been developing for the past 23 years.
And the course is set up to encourage students to see every problem through a considered and ethically sound framework. Even if one opted to ignore that framework—which is unwise—it would be impossible not to be aware of it now.
Last Revision: July 13, 2017