CLOSUP in the Classroom - Policy Analysts
CLOSUP Policy Analysts are University of Michigan students affilliated with the Center to help carry out research and analysis on a variety of state and local policy issues. These students may be employed by the Center or participate in an independent study for course credit.
After their time at the Ford School, CLOSUP Policy Analysts take their experience and expertise to positions with leading policy organizations. For example, Kristy Hartman, a CLOSUP Policy Analyst for AY2012-2013, later joined the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) as an energy policy specialist and was quoted in the Wall Street Journal regarding new policies on hydraulic fracturing in Colorado.
Current Policy Analysts are listed below. For other recent Policy Analysts, see here.
Monika is a research assistant working on the Michigan Public Policy Survey. They are a dual degree masters student at the Ford School and the School of Social Work (MPP/MSW '21), and have a B.A. in Sociology from Western Washington University (Class of 2012). Prior to coming to the University of Michigan, Monika worked in the mental health field for nearly four years, and served in the Peace Corps, working in Morocco teaching English before that. They are most interested in mental health policy reform as well as state-level executive government.
Capri is a Policy Analyst for CLOSUP’s Local Fiscal Health Project. She is a Master’s student at the Ford School (MPP, Class of 2021), and has a B.A. in International Studies and Public Policy Analysis from Washington and Jefferson College. Capri is interested in federal and state fiscal policies as well as education policies in the U.S.
Nicholas is a Policy Analyst with the Local Fiscal Health Health Project at CLOSUP. He is a masters student at the Ford School (Class of 2022), and has a Juris Doctor from the University of Kansas School of Law in 2015 and a B.A. in Political Science from Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas. Nicholas is interested in the study of state institutions and the public's trust in government.
Christian Ilarraza Colon
Christian is assisting with the Communities of Interest project at CLOSUP. He is a masters student at the Ford School (class of 2022). Prior to attending the Ford School, he served as an education volunteer in Peace Corps Philippines. In this position, Christian worked on youth development and community engagement projects on Cebu island. He is interested in the intersection of technology and public policy as it pertains to federal regulations.
Kaitlin is a Policy Analyst for CLOSUP. She is an undergraduate majoring in Organizational Studies through LSA with a minor in Public Policy at the Ford School. Kaitlyn is most interested in voting behavior and the impact of public opinion on policy.
Fanta is a Communications Research Assistant at CLOSUP. She is a Master of Public Policy candidate at the Ford School. She holds Bachelors in Political Science and Philosophy from Penn State University. Prior to joining the Ford School, Fanta worked as a Development & Education coordinator at the Bronx Cooperative Development Initiative where she focused on fundraising strategy development & curricular vision and execution. Fanta is interested in social policy, including public education reform, fostering dialogue for peacebuilding, and the exploration of sustainable poverty solutions for disadvantaged communities.
Kristina is a Policy Analyst on CLOSUP's Functioning of Democracy across the Urban-Rural Spectrum project. She is a master's student at the Ford School (Class of 2022) and has a Bachelor of Public Affairs and a B.A. in Urban Studies from Wayne State University. As a lifelong Michigander, Kristina is passionate about addressing urban-rural divides in policy including but not limited to economic and workforce development, climate change mitigation, and smart city infrastructure.
Meredith is a Policy Analyst for CLOSUP’s Local Fiscal Health project. She is a senior at the Ford School (Class of 2021) pursuing a focus area in democratic access and political participation, and also has a minor in Community Action and Social Change. Her policy interests are in local government, democratic access reform, and early childhood education policy.
Alexa is a Policy Analyst helping with data analysis and marketing for CLOSUP’s Michigan Public Policy Survey. She is an undergraduate student in the College of Literature Science and the Arts at the University of Michigan (Class of 2024). Her interests include the interaction of federal, state, and local policy as well as the impacts of entrepreneurship and immigration on these policy decisions.
Kelly is a Policy Analyst studying agricultural runoff policy and Lake Erie harmful algal blooms for CLOSUP. She is a current senior in LSA (class of 2021) studying political science and water and the environment through PiTE. Alongside her role at CLOSUP, she currently serves as the Vice President of Students for Clean Energy on Michigan's campus. She is interested in a wide range of environmental policy but is most passionate about policy issues impacting the Great Lakes.
Olivia "Livvy" Hintz
Olivia is a Policy Analyst studying community reactions toward solar energy development in the Great Lakes region for Sarah Mills and CLOSUP’s Renewable Energy Policy Initiative. She is a third-year undergraduate student pursuing a B.S. in Environmental Science with a minor in Writing (Class of 2022). She is most interested in renewable energy policy, energy justice policy, and accelerating a successful transition to clean energy.
Christian is a Policy Analyst studying urban/rural divisions and connections in Michigan for CLOSUP’s Functioning of Democracy across the Urban-Rural Spectrum project. He is a master of urban and regional planning student at the Taubman School of Art and Architecture (Class of 2021), and has B.A. in political economy and urban studies from The University of California, Berkeley. Christian is interested in studying urban and local policies, particularly in economic development and transportation, and their social and physical effects on the built environment.
Clare moved to the Detroit area from Canada in 2016 to work as an engineer in the automotive industry. Clare attended McGill University in Montréal where she received a Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering. After working as a design engineer on electric vehicles, she decided to switch gears and return to school to pursue a career focused on community improvement. She is passionate about community-based policy, focused on neighborhood-specific solutions to address inequality. She is currently working with CLOSUP to identify Communities of Interest to help inform the Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission as they begin the new redistricting process in Michigan. In her spare time, Clare enjoys playing ultimate Frisbee, baking, and spending time with her two greyhounds.
Jordan is a research assistant working to identify Communities of Interest for the upcoming redistricting cycles with the CLOSUP team. He is a junior in the B.A. program at the Ford School and is also pursuing a minor in Spanish. Jordan is interested in economic policy issues.
Priyanka is a Policy Analyst working with the Michigan Public Policy Survey data. She is a masters student at the Ford School (class of 2022), and holds a BA in Mathematics and Economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Prior to attending the Ford School, Priyanka worked as a research assistant for the Center for Economic History at Northwestern University. She is most interested in welfare policy and overcoming obstacles to providing social services at the local level.
Julie is a research assistant studying access to information for CLOSUP's "Functioning of Democracy across the Urban-Rural Spectrum" project. She is a masters student at the Ford School and has a Bachelors of Arts in Public Policy from Vanderbilt University in 2014. Prior to attending the Ford School, Julie completed her AmeriCorps VISTA service at a social services agency in Columbus, OH, in addition to having worked in the non-profit and labor sectors. Julie is interested in social policy and state/local government.
Kyron is a Policy Analyst studying local government policy and management at CLOSUP through projects like "The Functioning of Democracy across the Urban-Rural Spectrum" and "Understanding Local Fiscal Health". He is a student at the Ford School pursing his Master of Public Policy, and currently holds a B.A. in Political Science from Bowling Green State University. Kyron is interested in local government management and urban policy as it relates to housing displacement, and property tax especially in the City of Detroit.
Karley is a Policy Analyst on CLOSUP’s "Functioning of Democracy across the Urban-Rural Spectrum" initiative. She is a master’s of public policy student at the Ford School (Class of 2022), and has a BA in economics and mathematics from Western Washington University. Prior to attending the Ford School Karley performed workforce development research in metro Detroit, and she is interested in the relationship between the social safety net and employment.
Emma is a Policy Analyst working with Sarah Mills to study community responses to proposed solar projects throughout the Great Lakes region. She is currently a sophomore in the College of Literature, Science and the Arts (Class of 2023). Emma is most interested in renewable energy and environmental mitigation policy.
Ryan is a Policy Analyst studying communities of interest with CLOSUP's Michigan Redistricting Project. He is a senior BA at the Ford School with a minor in business. After graduation, he would like to pursue a career in East Asian economic and security policy