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Staff Profiles

UW-Madison Team

MarK ConnollyMark Connolly (PI for the UW team) is associate scientist with the Wisconsin Center for Education Research (WCER) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison . He earned a PhD in higher education from Indiana University Bloomington. He directs and coordinates research activities among UW researchers and between the CU and UW teams, liaises with administrative personnel at UW and in funding agencies, and supervises support staff. He also assists with study design, data collection and analysis, and writing up results.

You-Geon LeeYou-Geon Lee is an assistant researcher with the Wisconsin Center for Education Research at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He earned a PhD in educational policy studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. You-Geon’s research interests include school choice, school effects, policy and program evaluation, social stratification, educational inequality, and higher education. His responsibility with TALR includes analyzing national and institutional datasets for the Institutional study.

CU-Boulder Team

Anne-Barrie HunterAnne-Barrie Hunter (PI for the CU team) is a co-director and senior professional researcher for Ethnography & Evaluation Research. In addition to collaborating with Mark Connolly on matters of project administration, Anne-Barrie is the primary contact between the TALR team and institutional personnel at participating sites. She also assists Seymour in organizing and conducting the Persistence study, particularly management of all data and the shared coding and analytic process, and will be a primary coder and analyst.

Elaine SeymourElaine Seymour (co-PI) is a retired research associate and director emerita for Ethnography & Evaluation Research. She earned a PhD in sociology from the University of Colorado Boulder. Seymour directs the Persistence study, collaborates in the selection of student samples, interviews students at every site, and organizes the division of intellectual labor in coding, analysis, and reporting.

Heather Thiry (co-PI) is a research associate at the University of Colorado  Boulder. Heather earned a PhD in educational foundations, policy, and practice at CU–Boulder. She conducts student interviews during campus site visits and contributes to the coding and analysis of student interviews for the Persistence study .

Timothy Weston (co-PI) is a research associate at the ATLAS Institute. He earned a PhD in education, research, and evaluation methods at the University of Colorado. Tim  oversees the customization and administration of the SALG survey for the Instruction study and analyzes SALG data to examine students’ perceptions of learning gains from their science courses.

Dana Holland recently joined the Talking about Leaving Revisited project as a Professional Research Associate with the Center for STEM Learning at the University of Colorado Boulder. She has a joint-PhD in Education and Sociology from the University of Pennsylvania, and her BA and MA are both in Anthropology. Dana has published and conducted research in areas including youth, higher education, education policy, high school reform, teacher professional development, and informal science education.”

Julia SavoyRaquel Harper is a research associate in the Center for STEM Learning at the University of Colorado Boulder.  Raquel earned a PhD in Public Communication and Technology at Colorado State University.  Her TALR responsibilities include coding and analysis of interviews for the Persistence study.


University of Kentucky – Lexington

Joseph FerrareJoseph Ferrare (co-PI) is Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Policy Studies & Evaluation at the University of Kentucky. His research examines historical and contemporary inequities in patterns of education attainment and the network governance structures that are seeking to shape these patterns through market based reforms. As the leader of both the Gateway Coursetaking and National & Institutional studies for TALR, Joe’s responsibilities include developing the research design and selecting appropriate methodologies; training team members in research methods used in this study; overseeing the analysis of institutional and national data sets; and overseeing field data collection, analysis and dissemination.

Julia MillerJulia Miller is a doctoral student in Sociology at the University of Kentucky focusing on the ways that education and educational policy are mediated by rural context. She graduated from Ohio University in 2015 with her B.A. in Sociology and Psychology and a certificate in Women’s and Gender Studies. During her time at O.U. she worked as a research assistant at the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs on projects that involved women’s knowledge, attitudes and practices about infant health in a rural context, state educational policy trends, and engineering students’ decision-making processes regarding cooperative educational experiences, among others. Her own research interests have included the particular effects of sexual education policies on women living in rural states and the applicability of federal education policy to rural states.