Mealy aims to use the skills he gains at Harris to offer innovative solutions to the most complex problems in our military.
Headshot of Pat Mealy
Pat Mealy

“I have a relentless commitment to serving something greater than myself,” said Pat Mealy, MPP Class of 2023 and Pearson Fellow.

A Major in the United States Army, Mealy has led and served alongside soldiers in the 82nd Airborne Division, the 3rd Cavalry Regiment, the 7th Infantry Division, and the 75th Ranger Regiment. He has also deployed to Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. “I have been entrusted to lead America’s sons and daughters throughout my career,” he said. “They deserve a leader who cares for them, develops them, and drives them to success.”

A native of Hyattsville, Maryland, Mealy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a bachelor of science in management and a minor in systems engineering.

“Because people took the time to invest in me, I am fortunate to be where I am today, and paying it forward has been my biggest motivation. For example, I was determined to be a role model for my younger brother. Upon graduating from West Point when I was 23, I decided to assume full custody of him—I wanted nothing more than to provide him with better opportunities. I am extremely proud that he is preparing to attend college. This experience cemented my conviction that we all are capable of being a transformative force in someone’s life.”

Mealy considers earning his Master of Public Policy at Harris a transformative opportunity. “I am attending the University of Chicago because the United States Army and the General Wayne A. Downing Scholar Program invested in me,” he said. “I am excited to see how my tactical experiences, in conjunction with Harris’ rigorous academic program, will improve my critical thinking skills. I look forward to building the analytical skills necessary to be a Field-Grade Officer who can offer innovative solutions to complex problem sets.”

Given his military experience, it is not surprising that Mealy was drawn to The Pearson Institute for the Study and Resolution of Global Conflicts. As a Pearson Fellow, Mealy is interested in exploring global security and conflict. “The Pearson Institute’s mission spoke to my experience in organizations whose actions directly impact emerging and national policy,” he said. “I’ve already gained much from the other Fellows, and my Harris community broadly,” said Mealy. “It is humbling to learn alongside such remarkable people. I am challenged daily, and I learn something new every day.” Mealy is looking forward to several courses, including Dr. Maliha Chishti's Introduction to Peacebuilding and Congressman Mike Quigley’s Contemporary US Intelligence.

In addition, Mealy also immersed himself in the Harris community by joining the Harris Student Organization Military Affiliated Students of Harris (MASH) almost immediately. “I had reached out to [MASH founder] Zackariah Crahen early on, and was eager to get involved,” Mealy said.

“In my career, understanding the strategic implications of military operations is imperative to ultimately ensuring the freedoms and liberties of all Americans and our allies,” he said. “By combining my operational experiences with an MPP from Harris, I aim to challenge my assumptions, think critically, and be better prepared to solve the most challenging and complex problems in our Army and military today and into the future.”