EEPS - Emerging Education Policy Scholars

Emerging Education Policy Scholars

The Thomas B. Fordham Institute and the American Enterprise Institute offer a unique program aimed at cultivating human capital within the education-policy sector. The Emerging Education Policy Scholars (EEPS) program brings newly minted Ph.D. scholars and Ph.D. candidates who bring to the table a keen research eye, fresh ideas, and boundless (or budding) enthusiasm for education policy to our nation’s capital to meet with education-policy experts and to share and brainstorm exciting new directions for K–12 education research. The program focuses on three over-arching goals:

  • To foster an opportunity for talented, promising scholars to connect with other scholars in their field, as well as to introduce them to key players in the education-policy arena;
  • To expand the pool of talent and ideas from which the education-policy arena currently draws; and
  • To increase understanding of how the worlds of policy and practice intersect with scholarly research in education and related fields.

The EEPS Experience

"While professional societies provide ample opportunity for within field collaboration, we often lack opportunity to bridge the silos. EEPS not only provided me with a broader perspective on education policy, it allowed me to network with folks from different fields working towards similar goals whom I might not have met otherwise.” 

- Andrew Schaper (Cohort 5)

“EEPS allowed me to expand my professional network, and to access a side of policy consideration and dissemination that I had not previously encountered in any meaningful way. Perhaps most importantly, since completing my EEPS experience I have further grown my cross-cohort EEPS network and benefited enormously from collaboration and conversations that this networking has spurred!” 

- Shaun Dougherty (Cohort 3)

“EEPS is professionally valuable, totally unique, and thought-provoking.” 

– Michael Ford (Cohort 5)

"In addition to connecting with other young scholars from across the country, the experience has expanded my view of the ways in which I can use my research to contribute to public debates currently underway in education policy. As a result of the experience, I feel better equipped to translate my research into approachable mediums suitable for broader audiences." 

- F. Chris Curran, Ph.D. (Cohort 5)

For more information about the EEPS program, please contact program coordinators Victoria McDougald and Brendan Bell or read the EEPS factsheet (which includes information on how to apply). The EEPS program is generously supported by the Smith Richardson Foundation.


Class of 2018-19

Cameron Anglum
Doctoral Candidate in education policy at University of Pennsylvania

Sade Bonilla
Doctoral Candidate at Stanford University

Paul Bruno
Doctoral Candidate in urban education policy at the University of Southern California

Olivia Chi
Doctoral Candidate in education policy and program evaluation at Harvard University and Doctoral Fellow in the Multidisciplinary Program in Inequality and Social Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School

Joshua Childs
Assistant Professor of education policy and planning in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy at the University of Texas, Austin

Megan Duff
Doctoral Candidate in education policy at Teachers College, Columbia University

Hayden Fredrick-Clarke
Director of Cultural Proficiency of Boston Public Schools and Founder of BlackPrint Education Consulting

Michel Grosz
Senior Analyst at Abt Associates

Joanne Golann
Assistant Professor of public policy and education and Assistant Professor of sociology at Vanderbilt University

Andrew Kidd
Economist with the Economic Research Center at The Buckeye Institute

Jacob Kirksey
Doctoral Candidate in the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education and a Graduate Research Fellow with the National Science Foundation

Shira Korn
Doctoral Candidate in K-12 education policy at and a Master of public policy student at University of Southern California

Dennis Kramer
Assistant Professor of education and policy and Director of the Education Policy Research Center at the University of Florida

Tuan Nguyen
Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at Kansas State University

Laura Northrop
Assistant Professor in the Department of Teacher Education at Cleveland State University

Luis Rodriguez
Assistant Professor of educational leadership in the Department of Administration, Leadership, and Technology at New York University

Lauren Sartain
Senior Researcher at the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research

M. Danish Shakeel
Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Program on Education Policy and Governance at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government

Elise Swanson
Distinguished Doctoral Fellow in the Department of Education Reform at the University of Arkansas, Research Assistant in the Office for Education Policy, and a Research Fellow with Charassein: The Character Assessment Initiative at the University of Arkansas

Samantha Viano
Faculty Member in the College of Education and Human Development at George Mason University


Previous EEPS Cohorts

EEPS Newsletters