Name: John Milligan
Class Year: 2017
Job Title: Political Director
Organization Name: Massachusetts Republican Party
1. In one sentence, what does your job entail?
Recruiting, training, and running Republicans for office up and down the ballot here in the Commonwealth.
2. What planned and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross?
When I was a sophomore at Holy Cross my friend Rob Tiro, Class of 2015, ran for school committee in his home town Wakefield. Every Friday night for a few months in the Spring Semester we would drive up to Wakefield and spend our weekends canvassing. During the week we would work on mailings, digital, phone banking, and anything else we could do from his apartment in Williams.
When I graduated a conservative grassroots organization that had helped Rob was looking for a Regional Field Director in Southeastern Mass where I grew up, and that was my first ‘real job’ in politics.
3. How did you learn/decide it was a good fit for you?
I still remember that first night when Rob won, and the feeling that came with it. I guess you could say I caught the campaign bug. Thankfully I have had more nights like that, and of course a few on the other side.
4. What were you involved in when you were on campus?
On Campus I was heavily involved in Student Life through Gateways Orientation, Residence Life, Mock Trial, and Student Government.
I also studied abroad at the University of St. Andrew’s during the 2016 Presidential Primaries in the United States, on the heels of the Scottish Independence referendum, and in the midst of the Brexit debate.
5. What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?
I was a History major, and also took a significant amount of Political Science courses. I think historical study of our countries founding have influenced by political ideology.
6. What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work?
This may be a cliche answer, but I use the communication skills both written and verbal I developed at Holy Cross each and every day.
Outside of the classroom I served as Program Coordinator and then Head orientation leader for Gateways Orientation. This helped me hone the logistical skills you need to work with campaigns from selectman to U.S. Senate.
7. What advice do you have for students on campus today?
No matter when we overcome this virus, the work force you enter will look a lot different than the one I did three short years ago. Think about how you are handling remote learning now, what skills are you developing and how can you market those to employers in your field in the post-virus world.