2018_albert.jpg

Sasha Albert
Graduate Degree: Brandeis University
Undergraduate Degree: Vassar College
Area of Interest: Public Health Issues
Mentors: Ben Forman, MassINC and Rebecca Lobb, Family Reach
Agency: Massachusetts Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector
Supervisor: Audrey Morse Gasteier, Chief of Policy and Strategy
Project Description: Sasha Albert's projects supported the Health Connector’s work to ensure that Massachusetts residents have timely and comprehensive health insurance. She drafted a memo on – and policy recommendations to resolve – gaps in health insurance coverage for newborns that can leave new parents with large and unexpected medical bills. These coverage gaps occur due to overlaps in Health Connector and MassHealth eligibility for pregnant people, and mismatches in when new parents are required to report their babies for insurance coverage. The Health Connector aims to share this information with MassHealth, and to work to implement a policy solution. The Health Connector also aims to take a more proactive role in ensuring that the benefit designs and formularies of the health plans on its shelf are non-discriminatory; to support this work, she developed a comprehensive brief defining benefit design discrimination, the history of pre- and post-Affordable Care Act nondiscrimination protections, and options for the Health Connector’s future role in nondiscrimination. She also developed a memo offering considerations and recommendations for collecting gender, sex, and pregnancy eligibility information on applications for health insurance coverage in a more inclusive way. Other projects included developing graphs and charts to depict insurance coverage rates and types in Massachusetts over the past 23 years and researching the history of insurance carrier participation in the Massachusetts exchange.

2018_arora.jpgVishal Arora
Graduate Degree: Harvard Medical School
Undergraduate Degree: Harvard College
Area of Interest: Public Health Issues
Mentors: Kevin Sullivan, Babson College
Agency: MassHealth
Supervisor: Ishan Shrestha, Director of Strategy and Special Projects and Matthew Klitus, CSO/CFO
Project Description: Vishal spent his summer working for MassHealth’s Strategy Team, designing policy reforms to restructure care and payment models for long-term care providers and services, which has annual spend of $1.6B. Many of these reforms were aimed to improve the quality of care for seniors throughout the Commonwealth over the next five years. He was also responsible for preliminary modeling to determine the costs of these policy solutions for MassHealth. While designing these reforms, he also collaborated with leadership from the Office of Long Term Services and Supports as well the Executive Office of Elder Affairs.

2018_benevides.jpgJill Benevides
Graduate Degree: Tufts University
Undergraduate Degree: University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Area of Interest: Social Services Issues
Mentors: Mary Jo Meisner, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board and Heidi Sulman, Brandeis University
Agency: Massachusetts Department of Public Health
Supervisor: Kate Roper, MECCS Project Director
Project Description: Jill Benevides spent her summer at the Department of Public Health working in Early Childhood Services.  Jill modernized the Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Training Compendium compiling, organizing and formatting the training data to include relevant professional development from across colleges and universities, state agencies and private non-profit institutes, aligning it with new national standards, and disseminating the Guide to a range of child-serving professionals.  In addition, she was involved with project LAUNCH, specifically focused on the integration of behavioral health and primary care, as well as the Massachusetts Early Childhood Comprehensive System’s Data and Racial Equity Initiative, working to determine how to best capture and measure child developmental health and family well-being in an integrated early childhood data system. To learn about these initiatives as well as view the Early Childhood Mental Health Training Compendium, please visit http://www.ecmhmatters.org/.

2018_bruck.jpgChelsea S. Bruck
Graduate Degree: MIT
Undergraduate Degree: Northwestern University
Area of Interest: Arts
Mentors: Carol Burns, Taylor Burns
Agency: Mayor's Office for Arts and Culture, City of Boston
Supervisor: Kara Elliott-Ortega, Director
Project Description: Chelsea’s fellowship was with the Boston Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture (MOAC), where she spent her summer conducting a cultural equity study to inform how the City supports Boston’s underrepresented artists and cultural organizations. Her study began by mapping and analyzing existing data on artists and arts organizations that have previously applied for MOAC’s programs and resources. After identifying gaps in representation in MOAC’s applicant pool, Chelsea continued the study by conducting interviews with over 20 key internal and external stakeholders. She then developed a report of her findings, which recommended various strategies and tactics to make MOAC’s resources more accessible. In addition, Chelsea developed equity-specific questions to help MOAC better evaluate grant applicants, and she also designed a survey in support of efforts to monitor and evaluate MOAC’s reach more effectively.

2018_chan.jpgCollyn Chan
Graduate Degree: MIT
Undergraduate Degree: University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
Area of Interest: Environmental Issues
Mentors: Vivien Li, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board and Jennifer Haugh, Greener U
Agency: Office of Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu, City of Boston
Supervisor: Michelle Wu, Boston City Councilor
Project Description: Collyn’s fellowship was with the Office of Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu where she worked on a report for the upcoming East Boston Master Plan process. An historically low-income and immigrant community, East Boston’s most pressing challenges include accelerated housing development, housing affordability and displacement, high risk of flooding and sea-level rise, and high barriers to civic participation from its non-English speaking population. The focus of the project was to build an understanding of what East Boston community members envision for their future, and the values and policies that should drive the master planning process. Through interviews with local organizations and municipal staff, a survey of over 150 community members, site visits and an analysis of existing and comparable policies – Collyn developed a final report and set of policy and process recommendations for city council and municipal offices to prioritize. The report informs actions that can be taken to address cross-cutting policy areas, including the creation of affordable housing units, adequate zoning and financial requirements for district-level climate impacts, and increasing immigrant and minority participation in civic process.

2018_claudel.jpgMatthew Claudel
Graduate Degree: MIT
Undergraduate Degree: Yale University
Area of Interest: Government Innovation
Mentors: Phil Puccia, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board and Devin Quirk, Chief of Operations, Department of Neighborhood Development, City of Boston
Agency: Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics, City of Boston
Supervisor: Stephen Walter, Program Director and Michael Evans, Program Director
Project Description: Beta Blocks is a public, co-creative exploration of civic technology. My intention this summer was to set the stage for Beta Blocks, before it is formally begun in partnership with the project team (lead by the Emerson eLab). Matthew's work included case studies of past MONUM projects, focusing on what those precedents suggest for public engagement, regulation, finance, and temporality. Furthermore, a literature review, and a list of foreign precedents and inspirations, provide academic and non-academic grounding. Building on these – and much informed by conversations with the project team and my experience at MONUM – Matthew wrote a number of short draft essays that outline his own perspective on dimensions of Beta Blocks, such as Defining Civic Technology, the Paradox of Institutions and Scaling, and articulating what Beta Blocks is NOT. This work is well-summarized in the MONUM blog post that he wrote, as well as in a zine that he created.

2018_figueiredomiller.jpgLuc Figueiredo Miller
Graduate Degree: Boston University School of Public Health
Undergraduate Degree: University of Massachusetts, Boston
Area of Interest: Housing Issues
Mentors: Jessica Casey, Chief Officer for Operations Policy and Oversight, MBTA
Agency: Department of Neighborhood Development, City of Boston
Supervisor: Marcy Ostberg, Director, Mayor's Housing Innovation Lab and Katherine Brady, Program Manager, Office of Housing Stability
Project Description: Luc spent the summer working for the City of Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development (DND). His main project was with the Housing Innovation Lab where he made developed recommendations for a pilot program called “Good Landlord Loans.” This proposed product would offer small landlords financial assistance to small landlords to do critical home repairs in exchange for maintaining affordable rents for their tenants. Luc researched best practices in other cities, and interviewed 10 small landlords across the city in order to understand their experiences, their needs and their interest in the proposed Good Landlord Loan program. Taking this information, Luc collaborated with internal partners to create a feasible policy that would be easily adaptable to existing programs at DND. Luc also supported the Office of Housing Stability at DND on a number of projects that address the displacement of Boston residents. He assisted writing a policy that would require larger developers and property managers to decrease their eviction rates in their properties in order to receive city funds for projects.  He also helped with writing a grant that would expand the “Stable Ground” project which focuses on the trauma of displacement through participatory community-based art and cultural programming to inform the work of the Office of Housing Stability.

2018_formica.jpgAmanda Formica
Graduate Degree: Tufts University
Undergraduate Degree: George Washington University
Area of Interest: Environmental Issues
Mentors: Tom Tinlin, Howard Stein Hudson and Neil Veilleux, Meisters Consulting Group
Agency: Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources
Supervisor: Ian Finlayson, Senior Climate Policy Analyst and Alex Pollard, Energy Efficiency Commercial Program Manager
Project Description: Amanda Formica worked at the Department of Energy Resources (DOER), in the Energy Efficiency Division, leading stakeholder engagement, strategic planning, and data analysis for the MassSave® Three Year Energy Efficiency Plan process.  She also co-led the development of a tool that will help companies introduce their new energy efficiency technologies into the Mass Save® programs, proposed a data structure to streamline a new innovative residential energy efficiency program, and worked to optimize processes for public participation in the statewide Energy Efficiency Advisory Council. Amanda represented DOER at the Carbon Free Boston Social Equity Working Group, and her stakeholder engagement around better addressing the needs of moderate income families in energy efficiency programs led to a meeting between electric and gas utility companies, non-profits, and municipalities to incorporate more strategies for this population in the Three Year Energy Efficiency Plan.

2018_hedberg.jpgCaroline Hedberg
Graduate Degree: Fletcher School of International Law and Diplomacy
Undergraduate Degree: Middlebury College
Area of Interest: Education
Mentors: Ramon Soto, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board and Mary Burkhauser, Harvard Graduate School of Education
Agency: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
Supervisor: Carrie Conaway, Associate Commissioner for Planning, Research and Delivery Systems
Project Description: Caroline's fellowship placement was with the Office of Planning and Research (OPR) in the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. As a summer fellow, she conducted research to support the How Do We Know Initiative which encourages educators to build, use, and share evidence about practice to inform policies and programs that maximize the likelihood of student success. She conducted interviews with school districts across Massachusetts to better understand how districts currently build, use, and share evidence. Caroline then drew on national scholarship about evidence use in education to make recommendations for OPR as they build resources and tools for districts to make it easier to leverage evidence to improve student outcomes.

2018_ho.jpgMichael Ho
Graduate Degree: Harvard Graduate School of Education
Undergraduate Degree: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Area of Interest: Education
Mentors: Tom Keane, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board and John Hansen, Harvard Graduate School of Education
Agency: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
Supervisor: Carrie Conaway, Associate Commissioner for Planning, Research and Delivery Systems
Project Description: During his fellowship at the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, Michael Ho conducted research on the state of attendance and chronic absenteeism in the Commonwealth. He synthesized data for all 1.1 million public school students in Massachusetts to write a research brief detailing subgroup absenteeism statistics, where students were disproportionately absent, and the association of absenteeism with short and long-term academic outcomes to inform statewide education policies.

2018_jeter.jpgKara Jeter
Graduate Degree: Boston University School of Public Health
Undergraduate Degree: United States Military Academy
Area of Interest: Public Health Issues
Mentors: Dan Kennedy, Associate Professor, Northeastern University School of Journalism and Audrey Morse Gasteier, Massachusetts Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector
Agency: Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs
Supervisor: Robin Lipson, Chief of Staff and Lynn Vidler, Assistant Director of Home and Community Programs
Project Description: As part of the Rappaport Public Policy Fellowship, Kara had the privilege of working under Robin Lipson, Chief of Staff and Chief Strategy Officer at Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Executive Office of Elder Affairs.  Her main policy focus was social isolation, loneliness and depression in older adults.  As part of this, she drafted a report for Fiscal Year ’18 Behavioral Health Initiatives comprising of all programs and actions of the Executive Office of Elder Affairs related to Behavioral Health in older adults.  This provided a good base to launch her main report focusing on problem of social isolation, loneliness and depression in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts: defining the issue and the importance of addressing the situation; current initiatives; and best practices the Commonwealth can pursue.

2018_johnson.jpgSonie Johnson
Graduate Degree: Boston College School of Social Work
Undergraduate Degree: University of Texas at San Antonio
Area of Interest: Social Services Issues
Mentors: Tiziana Dearing, Professor of Macro Practice, Boston College School of Social Work and Emeka Agudile, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health
Agency: Department of Neighborhood Development, City of Boston
Supervisor: Katherine Brady, Program Manager, Office of Housing Stability
Project Description: Sonie’s fellowship at the Office of Housing Stability (OHS) involved analyzing and providing recommendations for city programs to strengthen outcomes for families at risk for homelessness. As a result of this placement and research, Sonie was able to identify daily stressors, which affect the health and well-being of staff and residents. She also identified issues of poverty that contribute to displacement and homelessness for individuals in the Family Safety Net Program.

2018_kim.jpgAbigail Kim
Graduate Degree: Boston University School of Public Health
Undergraduate Degree: Northeastern University
Area of Interest: Public Health
Mentors: Jim Segel, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board and Rep. Jeffrey Sanchez, House Ways and Means Chair, Massachusetts House of Representatives and former Rappaport/Boston Urban Scholar
Agency: Office of Senator John Keenan
Supervisor: Senator John Keenan, Massachusetts State Senate and Rappaport/Boston Urban Scholar and Alejandro Alves, Chief of Staff
Project Description:
Abby spent her fellowship in the office of State Senator John Keenan as the state sought passage of a comprehensive bill addressing the opioid crisis. Her primary focus was on the inclusion of language that would require emergency departments and prisons/jails to provide medications for addiction treatment and legislation authorizing a pilot harm reduction site for injection drug users to use pre-obtained drugs; evidence-based legislation that would increase access to addiction treatment and decrease the harms associated with substance use. To further this goal, she prepared talking points, briefs and a caucus presentation to inform conversations regarding the proposed legislation. She also created a detailed data brief through collaboration with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and researchers to demonstrate the burden of opioid use on individual cities and towns in the state, including multiple measures of opioid use, overdose, and HIV/Hep C rates and prevalence. She participated in meetings with other legislators and their staff, stakeholders and advocates to understand the variety of perspectives and opposition to the legislation. Further, she compiled an organized document mapping the iterations of the opioid bill from its conception by the Governor to the final version that was passed, helping to inform the staff and Senator of the bill’s progression.

2018_little.jpgTariana Little
Graduate Degree: Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health (PhD)
Undergraduate Degree: University of Massachusetts, Boston
Area of Interest: Public Health
Mentors: Monica Tibbits-Nutt, Executive Director, 128 Business Council
Agency: Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics, City of Boston
Supervisor: Jaclyn Youngblood, Program Manager
Project Description:Tariana worked with the City of Boston Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics (MONUM), the City's civic research and design team, and the Office of Food Access to design a scalable weekend food backpack prototype for homeless youth and their families in Boston Public Schools. This initiative, implemented at the Lilla G. Frederick Pilot School and Project Hope, with the help of the Boston Red Cross Food Pantry, is an extension of the successful yearlong “Boost Bag” prototype at the Thomas A. Edison K8 School in Brighton and is inspired by Food For Free’s Cambridge Weekend Backpack Program in Cambridge, MA .

2018_moore.jpgRory Moore
Graduate Degree: Boston University School of Public Health
Undergraduate Degree: University of Denver
Area of Interest: Public Health
Mentors: Renee Landers, Professor of Law, Suffolk University Law School and Alex Nally, Law Intern, Massachusetts Department of Higher Education
Agency: Massachusetts Department of Public Health
Supervisor: Corey Prachniak-Rincon, Director, Massachusetts Commission on LGBTQ+ Commission
Project Description:As a 2018 Harvard Rappaport Public Policy Summer Fellow, Rory had the opportunity to work with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) Office of HIV/AIDS (OHA) in partnership with AIDS Action Committee and Fenway Health on the June 15th, 2018 Getting to Zero Coalition HIV Innovations in Action Conference. For the conference, he developed moderator guides for all 16 sessions, compiled notes, reported on the key findings from the Men Who Have Sex With Men track session, and assisted with the final report. For OHA, Rory helped them with their Advisory Board Committee Focus Groups 2018 Membership Application. In addition, he worked with the MDPH Office of Sexual Health and Youth Development in partnership with the HealthCare For All (HCFA) led Protect Access to Confidential Healthcare (PATCH) Alliance to yield fact sheets on the PATCH Act, updated their Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Division of Insurance Bulletin for consumers, and did a brief on the formative research findings on confidential billing for Health Resources in Action. Lastly, Rory assisted the Commission on LGBTQ Youth with their 2019 fiscal year annual policy recommendations.

  1. Getting to Zero Coalition HIV Innovations in Action Conference Program
  2. Health Care For All Patient PATCH Act Fact Sheet      
  3. Health Care For All Provider PATCH Act Fact Sheet
  4. Health Care For All FAQ Division of Insurance Bulletin For Consumers
  5. Commission on LGBTQ Youth Annual Fiscal Year Recommendations
  6. A Push for Zero HIV Infections by 2020 Boston University SPH Publication

2018_novas.jpgMariel Novas
Graduate Degree: Harvard Graduate School of Education
Undergraduate Degree: Yale University
Area of Interest: Education
Mentors: Linda Dorcena Forry, Vice President for the Northeast Region on Diversity, Inclusion, and Community Relations, Suffolk Construction and Amy Moran Lowe, Senior Analyst, Government Accountability Office
Agency: Mayor's Office for Immigrant Advancement, City of Boston
Supervisor: Celina Barrios-Millner, Immigrant Integration Fellow
Project Description: As a fellow with the Mayor’s Office for Immigrant Advancement, Mariel Novas partnered with stakeholders and community members inside and outside the Boston Public Schools to create and elevate a series of interventions in support of immigrant students. As deportations and ICE enforcement have nearly tripled in the region, more students are directly impacted than ever.To address this reality,convened a working group of BPS administrators and proposed a support plan that included resource guides for educators and families, trainings for various constituencies, and publicly available webinars. These guides detailed both the legal, educational, and social services available to families in different neighborhoods as well as a checklist for schools to reference in the event that a student or a family member is detained or deported.

2018_ogilby.jpgGrace Ogilby
Graduate Degree: Harvard Kennedy School
Undergraduate Degree: Carleton College
Area of Interest: Technology and Innovation
Mentors: Danielle Cerny, Assistant Director, Government Innovation Lab, Harvard Kennedy School
Agency: Massachusetts Governor’s Office of Strategic Innovation
Supervisor: Greg Norfleet, Director of Strategic Innovation
Project Description: Grace worked in the Office of Strategic Innovation within the Office of Governor Charlie Baker. She focused her work on advancing the Governor’s Open for Business initiative. The initiative seeks to find the highest and best use of state properties and assets that are underutilized. Grace's work focused specifically on telecommunications policy.

2018_quinn.jpgLeila Quinn
Graduate Degree: Brandeis University
Undergraduate Degree: Mt. Holyoke College
Area of Interest: Housing
Mentors: Katherine Craven, Chief Administration Officer, Babson College and Colleen Dawicki, Working Cities Manager, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston
Agency: Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development
Supervisor: Brendan Goodwin, Director, Bureau of Rental Assistance and Gretchen Haupt, Program Coordinator
Project Description: During her time with DHCD, Leila worked on three projects, each in a different division of the agency. Leila assisted staff from the Public Housing Bureau the ongoing inter-agency Learn to Earn project which seeks to smooth out the “cliff effect” that families experience when earned income increases, and they suddenly lose public benefits. Leila’s research and recommendations were incorporated into recommendations to make it easier for Massachusetts residents to navigate the patchwork of safety nets. Second, with the Bureau of Housing and Rental Assistance, she is creating the first-ever public-facing “community report” on DHCD’s Moving to Work programs. The agency can now share a compelling narrative of their work promoting economic self-sufficiency and affordable housing. The report will serve as a template for future annual updates. Lastly, with the Bureau of Housing Development and Construction, Leila drafted an RFP which will allow DHCD to conduct an assessment of public housing’s vulnerability to climate change.

2018_woluchem.jpgMaia Woluchem
Graduate Degree: MIT
Undergraduate Degree: University of Pittsburgh
Area of Interest: Government Innovation
Mentors: Amy Dain, Dain Research and Monique Gibbs, Housing Development Officer
Agency: City of Boston’s Citywide Analytics Team
Supervisor: Stefanie Costa-Leabo, Project Manager
Project Description: This summer, Maia was an Analytics Fellow with the Department of Innovation and Technology at the City of Boston, tasked with helping the Office of Fair Housing and Equity tell the story of their work through data. The Office of Fair Housing and Equity does incredible work on a myriad of issues relating to housing stability, but this particular project was focused on the Investigations and Enforcement team, which deals with complaints of housing discrimination throughout the city. Over ten weeks, she used ArcGIS to create an interactive mapping platform that visualizes the past ten years of fair housing and inspectional services cases in the City of Boston. One can visualize trends in discrimination complaints against other maps of Boston, including those showing measures of social vulnerability, to better imagine how policy, neighborhood change, and an increasingly difficult housing market affect the landscape of fair housing throughout the city.

2018_wynn.jpgMaksim Wynn
Graduate Degree: Harvard Kennedy School
Undergraduate Degree: University of California, Los Angeles
Area of Interest: Housing
Mentors: Brian Doherty, Secretary/Treasurer, Building and Construction Trades Council of the Metropolitan District
Agency: Department of Neighborhood Development, Boston
Supervisor: Marcy Ostberg, Director, Mayor’s Housing Innovation Lab
Project Description: Housing with Public Assets is an inventive program aimed at helping address Boston’s housing crisis by developing affordable housing on top of city owned assets like libraries and fire stations. Working with the City of Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development, the Housing Innovation Lab and the Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics, Maksim Wynn analyzed a large portfolio of assets to determine where redevelopment would produce the greatest public benefit. He did this through a combination of spatial and data analysis and by conducting interviews with community members, city officials, as well as for- and non-profit developers. Maksim’s work will help policy makers determine the right asset to redevelop first and then will help them expand the pilot in a strategic, flexible way that can meet a wide range of development priorities.