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Matthew Mackey

4885

Bold Points

4x

Nominee

1x

Finalist

Bio

Hi! Welcome to my page. My name is Matthew (Pronouns: Xe/Xem). I am a Non-Binary Returning Education student studying for my Master's Degree in Social Work at Adelphi University, focused on social change through policy and legislative advocacy. Part of my drive for social change through advocacy lies in my belief of a world where people can be who they are without fear, rejection, or discrimination. To do this, we must not only address social justice issues with policies, but we must also change the cultural narrative. We must address the deep root of racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, ageism, and ableism by meeting it head on. This also requires us to break the chains of policies that create systematic oppression and rebuild our systems in a way that is equitable and socially just. In 2011, I created a petition to end the deportation of a same-sex, bi-national married couple over their legal marriage not being recognized by the federal government. The petition garnered over 20,000 signatures in a matter of 3 days, and was delivered to President Barack Obama. We won. While studying for my degree, I have used my time to further develop my skills as a policy maker and social justice advocate. I have been working with the National Association of Social Workers- New York State Chapter as a Policy Assistant, leader of a continuing International LGBTQ+ Social Work town hall, and now a candidate for New York Assembly in 2022.

Education

Adelphi University

Master's degree program
2019 - 2022
  • Majors:
    • Social Work

Marymount Manhattan College

Bachelor's degree program
2007 - 2010
  • Majors:
    • Drama/Theatre Arts and Stagecraft
  • Minors:
    • Drama/Theatre Arts and Stagecraft

Pine Bush Senior High School

High School
2002 - 2006

Miscellaneous

  • Desired degree level:

    Doctoral degree program (PhD, MD, JD, etc.)

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • Social Work
    • Political Science and Government
    • Public Policy Analysis
    • Public Administration and Social Service Professions, Other
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Public Policy

    • Dream career goals:

      Elected Representive

    • Policy Assistant

      National Association of Social Workers- NYS Chapter
      2020 – Present4 years
    • Family Advocate/Family Advocate Team Lead

      United Healthcare
      2017 – 20203 years
    • Physical Therapy Patient Representative

      Ellenville Regional Hospital
      2016 – 20171 year
    • Radiology Patient Representative

      Crystal Run Health Care
      2015 – 20161 year
    • Host/Server/Bartender/New Store Opening Trainer

      TGIFridays
      2009 – 20156 years

    Sports

    Soccer

    Club
    2001 – 20021 year

    Football

    Junior Varsity
    2002 – 20031 year

    Research

    • Public Policy Analysis

      National Association of Social Workers- NYS Chapter — Researcher/Intern
      2020 – Present

    Arts

    • Pine Bush Select Choice

      Music
      2004 – 2006
    • Self

      Drag Queen
      2009 – Present
    • Musical Theater Association

      Theatre
      2007 – 2010

    Public services

    • Public Service (Politics)

      Matthew For Change — Candidate
      2020 – Present
    • Advocacy

      National Association of Social Workers-NYS Chapter — Social Justice Committee Member
      2020 – Present
    • Volunteering

      Ulster County ARC — Volunteer
      2019 – 2019
    • Volunteering

      People's Place — Volunteer
      2019 – 2019
    • Volunteering

      Catskill Animal Sanctuary — Volunteer Painter
      2019 – 2019
    • Volunteering

      Hudson Valley LGBTQ+ Community Center — Volunteer
      2018 – 2019

    Future Interests

    Advocacy

    Politics

    Volunteering

    Philanthropy

    Entrepreneurship

    Art of Giving Scholarship
    Barbara Gittings, a LGBTQ+ Activist once said: “Equality means more than passing laws. The struggle is really won in the hearts and minds of the community, where it really counts.” As a graduate student studying for my Master's Degree in Social Work, my mission has become to change the cultural narrative of community groups to help achieve true equality for all disenfranchised groups. I do this through my work at school, as a founding co-editor-in-chief of a student run publication dedicated to social change through policy advocacy and both a volunteer and intern at the National Association of Social Workers- New York State Chapter for their Policy Team. My work consists of shaping political agendas, advocating for social, racial, and economic justice, meeting with state legislators, creating out-of-the box solutions for community issues and facilitating international town halls, all while dealing with the worldwide pandemic of Covid-19. However, all of my work that I have been doing almost did not happen. In November of 2020, I was facing a multitude of challenges which included working full time, volunteering and interning part time as part of my degree requirement for school, and also attending school part time and others. Adding in the stress and the impact of Covid-19 on my mental health, I had to make a drastic choice: Leave my full time job or leave school and stop my education (Not knowing if I would ever be able to return). I made the bold decision to leave my full time job to pursue my education, dedicating some of the extra time I had into my internship and volunteer work. While leaving my former position was the best decision I have ever made, it left me without an income and solely surviving off of scholarships and student loans. I have accomplished so much more than I ever thought possible at the Chapter and the work with the Policy Team. From working on Social Justice Issues and meeting legislators, to helping change the profession of Social Work on an international level, none of these essential issues could have been done if I made the decision to stay working. I look forward to continuing my work in changing the cultural narrative for community groups, fighting for social justice issues, and advocating for the disenfranchised. The impact this scholarship would have would be amazing. It would allow me to significantly reduce my financial burden with loans, directly pay for part of my tuition for my degree, and work toward a future where we can all live without fear of rejection or discrimination.
    Jameela Jamil x I Weigh Scholarship
    Throughout my life, I've struggled with who I am. Living in a conservative, rural, town which only sees gender through a binary lens, I live a separate life from most of those around me. In fact, most days, I can't even go out dressed the way I want (If I can even find clothes that are relatively Non-Binary) for fear of discrimination and of violence. It is exhausting, but it helped me realize something: that if I at 33, am feeling this way, there must be many more who are as well. I decided to take two different approaches to trying to find a solution, advocacy and acknowledgement. My first step was to create a platform for LGBTQ+ youth to identify with, a brave space where people could feel validated and for resources. I did that by using my Tiktok account (@CarbieWantaciao) to explain terminology to the Tiktok community and what happened next was unbelievable. In the matter of a couple of weeks, my account had amassed a subscriber total of over 26,000 people, mostly LGBTQ+ young people. Their comments would be reaching out to me asking me questions about coming out, where to find resources, how to find help, and advice on situations. Sometimes I would make a video, other times I would just comment the advice and help those around me. I'll never forget the story of a 13 year old girl who identified as a lesbian, who told me that her parents had threatened to kick her out of the house and she had no where to go. I privately messaged her and asked her what state she lived in so I could find out the local LGBTQ+ community services and connect them to her, advised they could provide resources, and provided some emergency contact numbers to the organization. She thanked me, and then I never heard back from her. I hope that she found the resources she needed to survive. This led to me realizing that our policies and our politicians have failed the LGBTQ+ population in this country and that for the LGBTQ+ community to thrive our country needs to change the cultural narrative around LGBTQ+ individuals. I decided to start with my own state, and with the approval of my internship with the National Association of Social Workers- New York State Chapter, I did just that. I developed a briefing paper full of potential solutions to open dialogue between the Governor's office and the LGBTQ+ community, including: The Formation of a State Holiday called Stonewall Day, officially recognizing the Stonewall Riots for the Historical Event that is was, Funding of a LGBTQ+ History Museum and Memorial, Passage of LGBTQ+ Inclusive Sexual Education and History Classes, the expungement of criminal records of LGBTQ+ individuals tried and convicted of crimes now deemed unconstitutional and finally, a public apology for the role New York State played in the discrimination of LGBTQ+ individuals throughout its history. The paper was delivered to the Governor's office through legislators in February of 2021. Although I have done much, my work is far from over. My experiences as both being an ally and part of a disenfranchised community have led me to use my voice in ways I never thought I would before, including being a candidate for New York State Assembly as my authentic self. Inspiring the much needed awareness to change the cultural narrative through progressive advocacy with the message, "Together, Change is Possible".