Celebrating Our Graduates: Matthew Condie
Being a well-rounded person is important to Matthew Condie. That’s why, when the time came to apply for a master’s program, he was drawn to the Munk School. His time in the Master of Public Policy (MPP) program helped him transition from a background in economics to a career in health policy. “Though I have policy experiences in areas such as infrastructure and economic development within the Ontario Public Service, I was looking to expand into something new. Health policy seemed like a great idea right now because I knew the meaningful work that would come out of it,” says Condie.
Condie’s interest in health policy was sparked in his final year of study with the MPP program, when he worked on a capstone project that required him to come up with a solution to a major policy issue that has emerged from the pandemic. “My solution was focused on inclusive growth, this idea that if we’re going to grow as a country, we have to do it inclusively so that everyone benefits and no one gets left behind. And health equity is a major component of this.”
A networking event helped Condie turn his interest in health policy into a job. He recently started working as a planning analyst for the Ontario Ministry of Health. In his role, Condie and his team oversee the ministry’s transitional care investments, ensuring a safe and effective transition of citizens from one healthcare setting to another. In his role, Condie looks at how best to transition people from hospital care to other forms of care, like home-based or long-term care. He’s happy to be doing meaningful work that will have a tangible impact on the community. “One great thing about the MPP program is the series of networking events organized by staff. I attended an OPS-focused event that was fascinating. I met with six different public servants over the course of an hour and one of them was from the Ministry of Health,” says Condie. “He referred me to the manager that I’m with right now. I ended up having an informal interview and by the end of the week, I was given a job offer. Exposure to these kinds of opportunities can be life-altering.”
Not only did the MPP program help Condie land a job, it equipped him with the skills to succeed in his role and in his other endeavours. During his time at the Munk School, he was finance director of the Master of Public Policy Student Association (MPPSA), where he helped to organize social events and provide mentorship to the MPP first-years. When the pandemic put in-person networking on hold and left many students isolated, Condie organized virtual social events that brought the MPP students together over Zoom. “Being part of the MPPSA was a very rewarding experience,” says Condie. “When I came into the MPP program, I was overwhelmed and uncertain of what to expect. It can be intimidating at first, when joining a program that’s well-known and has so many brilliant people coming into it. It made me wonder where I fit in. So I wanted to be a role model to the first-years coming into the program that might be feeling the same way and provide as much support as I could. That’s the type of support only a second-year can provide.”
Condie’s leadership skills also flourished in the MPP’s extracurriculars. Through the Public Good Initiative, a student-led initiative that provides pro-bono consulting services to not-for-profit organizations across Ontario, Mathew landed a role at the David Suzuki Foundation (DSF), conducting environmental research. “I helped to inform DSF’s 10-year strategic plan focused around a strategy to combat climate change and transition Canada to a ‘well-being driven society’.”
Another skill Condie acquired in the MPP program? Confidence. Although Condie, a talented visual artist, founded his art business when he was just 16, the confidence he gained in the MPP program helped him to elevate his platform. Condie’s business, MIND Works Art Company, has over 25,000 followers on Tik Tok and when he isn’t on the clock at the Ministry of Health, he makes pet portraits, family portraits and wildlife drawings for his supporters around the world. “My communication improved through the MPP program. I have built up an undeniable confidence in my abilities to the point that I can be expressive and feel comfortable sharing my passion worldwide. I’ve grown as a business owner, as a leader, and as a person through the MPP program.”
As he gears up for U of T’s convocation ceremony on June 23, Condie is celebrating his achievements and those of his classmates. “I’m proud of myself and quite proud of everyone else. In the MPP program, you’re exposed to so many incredible people that are just so bright. We might all have different interests and different specializations, but we’re all focused on making the world a better place. I know that great things are going to come out of that,” says Condie. “I’m very hopeful for the future because the next generation of policy leaders are going to come out of the Munk School. I’ll be forever grateful to call myself a Munk School alum and can’t wait to see the impact our graduating community will have.”
Join the Munk School in celebrating our grads at the University of Toronto’s virtual Spring Convocation 2021 ceremony!