I am a Ph.D. candidate in Education Policy and Program Evaluation at Harvard University. I decided to pursue this Ph.D. because I hold a strong belief that, to transform society and to achieve social equity, we need to change the experiences of students in K-12 and higher education. I hope that my work can one day contribute to that change.
In one strand of my work, I research how different educational experiences impact students' outgroup attitudes, prosocial and empathic behaviors, and social and political preferences—and how aggregate shifts in these outcomes ultimately impact societal economic and racial equity. This focus stems from a working theory (read: needs to be empirically tested) that a more equitable society cannot be achieved through improvement of education-specific outcomes (e.g., test scores and attainment) alone, but also requires increasing these potential "spillover" effects of education.
In the second strand of my work, I partner with educational agencies to conduct evaluations of their policies and programs. I view this work as critical and complementary to my research interests described above, which are less focused on the immediate educational outcomes of concern to most states and districts. Changing attitudes and behaviors is difficult work that takes time. As such, I believe it is imperative to support agencies' current efforts towards improving the opportunities of their students.
Finally, I enjoy teaching and discussing statistical methods, and how these methods can be used to help address societal inequities. I never considered myself to be savvy with numbers, but exposure to high quality research, support from amazing mentors, and access to well-taught classes has shown me the power of quantitative research. Through my work, I wish to also inspire others onto the same path.
Some of my current research projects investigate: the relationship between teachers' implicit racial bias and racial disparities in test scores and suspensions; how data on teacher applicant behavior can be used to increase the racial diversity of teacher workforces; the effects of school integration and diversity on racial attitudes and politics; and the effects of political partisanship on school-level outcomes.
Outside of research, I enjoy baking sourdough bread, playing ultimate frisbee, cuddling with my elderly long-haired dachshund, and fixing with my wife whatever the most recently broken thing is in our old, old house in Indianapolis.
Also, find me @MemeMedianMode on Twitter. I don't post much about research, mainly just GIFs.