Reporting to the Director of Higher Education and Education Finance Policy, the Higher Education Research and Policy Analyst will be charged with co-leading the Ed Trust’s associated research, development, and outreach work with respect to the organization’s College Results Online database. In addition, s/he will examine and analyze data from a variety of sources, including the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, National Postsecondary Student Aid Study, Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study, and Baccalaureate and Beyond Longitudinal Study, to better understand and present socioeconomic and racial patterns in postsecondary educational opportunity and achievement. The Analyst will write and publish under his or her own name. S/he will interface with the Ed Trust’s Government Affairs and Communications division to provide rapid responses to media requests and analyses of proposed legislation.
The Higher Education Research and Policy Analyst’s responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:
Qualifications and Experience
- Assist in developing recommended federal, state, and institutional policy responses to opportunity and achievement gaps in higher education;
- Draft memoranda, letters to key stakeholders, op-eds, and blog posts/web stories on higher education issues;
- Use a variety of data sources, including national and state databases, to synthesize and interpret trends in higher education access, affordability, and success, particularly with respect to low-income students and students of color, and communicate in oral and written form the results of this work to staff members and external audiences;
- Obtain, evaluate, clean, merge, format, and manage large datasets from external sources (e.g., federal and state agencies, institutions or systems of higher education, and other non-profit and research organizations);
- Play a key role in developing and communicating new tools highlighting institution of higher education successes and challenges with respect to low-income student and student of color higher education access, affordability, and success (e.g. an Equity Report Card);
- Conduct analyses of education datasets to inform the organization’s policy positions;
- Present data for lay audiences, including for Education Trust presentations and reports; and
- Respond to higher education policy and research data inquiries from staff, media, and the public at-large.
The Higher Education Research and Policy Analyst will work in a highly collaborative environment with other policy and practice team members and Education Trust senior staff. The ideal candidate should be strongly self-directed, with an interest in working independently to develop new areas of research and data analysis related to closing the achievement gap for low-income and minority students at all levels of education. We are looking for someone who enjoys working in a fast-paced, dynamic professional environment, in which expectations are high both for the quality and speed of work.
In addition, we are looking for a combination of the following qualifications and experience:
- A mix of strong analytical, research, and communications skills, with an emphasis on quantitative analysis and basic descriptive statistics;
- The ability to perform detailed quantitative analyses of large data sets using SAS and/or SPSS statistical analysis software;
- Extensive experience using Excel and PowerPoint, as well as working with large-scale datasets (familiarity with national education data sets, such as the IPEDS strongly preferred);
- A strong ability to read, evaluate, and integrate the varied academic and policy research relating to key issues in education (such as the distribution of resources, and policies and practices of highly successful institutions of higher education) to inform the Education Trust’s positions; and
- A master’s degree in public policy, education policy, statistics, or related fields, and/or several years of experience in a similar position.
Salary is commensurate with experience and qualifications. The Education Trust offers a comprehensive benefits package.