Rajaram ’19: Hamilton Gave Foundation for Research Skills – News


Hersheena Rajaram ’19 has been working as a data analyst at the University of Michigan Youth Policy Laboratory, and is convinced that her experiences in Hamilton have allowed her to develop the research and data analysis skills that she uses every day.

The Youth Policy Lab helps community and government organizations evaluate their programs and identify what can have a measurable impact based on the evidence. These projects aim to improve living standards in Michigan and include programs for children’s literacy, college access, and youth workforce development.

Rajaram, a major in economics, said that during her first two summers at college, she worked as a Levitt Center researcher with economics professor Paul Hagstrom on her study of secondary migration of refugees to the States. -United. “This experience served as an introduction to research and motivated me to pursue a career in research in economics,” she said.

After his third year, Rajaram interned at Urban Labs at the University of Chicago and applied his research, data analysis and writing skills to a more professional setting. “These experiences guided my job search towards research and policy positions in development economics,” she recalls.

In addition to taking economics classes and his thesis work with Hagstrom, Rajaram volunteered and worked with the refugee community in Utica. “(It) taught me how to effectively engage with local partners – an essential part of the Youth Policy Lab’s work to inform policy through evidence in Michigan,” she said.

As a staff member at the University of Michigan, Rajaram continues to learn beyond his lab work by taking courses and attending workshops on innovative research methods and policy practices. “I am also looking forward to learning from graduate students of the university to guide my further study plans,” Rajaram said. “Overall, the university provides a vibrant community to learn and inform my next steps.”

In the long term, Rajaram wishes to pursue graduate studies in development economics.


Paul N. Strickland

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